Loving the Messenger and Submitting to Him:
This submission is not that of a defeated fighter who is forced to surrender to the enemy. Rather it is the submission of an obedient subordinate to his master who is dearer to him than any other creature, who realises that only through submission will he achieve happiness.
It is the submission of the one realises that compared to his own self, this master has more concern and compassion for him, and is a better counsellor who is more knowledgeable about what benefits him, and is therefore capable of saving him. When a person realises these meanings with respect to Messenger, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, he will surely submit himself to the Messenger, and surrender his desires in obedience to him. Then he will be able to comprehend what it means to attain happiness through submission and obedience.
This matter is not easy to express in words. One needs to open one’s heart to allow the matter to sink in deeply, it cannot be attained by mere wishes or claims. There is a difference between knowing the meaning of love and being in love.
The Prophet’s Claim on the Believers:
All praises be to Allah who tells us:
“The Prophet has a higher claim on the believers that [they have on] their own selves.”
(Surah Al-Ahzab 33:6)
This claim on the believers involves the following two important matters:
1. Dearer Than One’s Self
The Messenger, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, should be more beloved than one’s own self. This is so because the Prophet’s claim on the believer is based on love; and a person usually loves themselves more than others; yet the Messenger should have more claim on them, and be dearer to them than themselves. A person who fulfils this quality acquires the quality of imaan.
2. The Ruler Over One’s Self
A person should not have an independent rule over themselves; this authority is the right of the Messenger, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam. His rule is superior to a master’s rule over his slave, or a father’s over his son. Thus a person has no right over himself except in accordance with what the Messenger disposes.
Deviation from that True Love
How then could such a closeness to the Messenger, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, ever be attained by one who isolates the Messenger’s message from the position of authority, who is more satisfied and pleased with someone else’s judgement, and who claims that the Messenger’s message does not offer full certainty?
There is no way to establish closeness to the Messenger except by isolating oneself from all but him, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, following him in anything and everything, and checking what someone else says against that with which he came, SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam. The one who follows this method will have their journey of hijrah straightforward and their knowledge and deeds will be upright.
May Allah enable us to achieve this lofty migration. Ameen!