The Hira mountain is situated in the north of Makkah and one can reach its summit within half an hour. The surface at this mountain consists of slabs of black stone and no signs of life are found in it. In its northern point, there is a cave which can be approached by man after crossing the stones. Its height is about as much as the stature of a man. Sunlight penetrates into a part of this cave and its remaining part is always dark.
However. this very cave is a witness to such incidents about its close friend that even today people hasten to it with an ardent desire to hear about these incidents from its mute language and to reach its threshold, after undergoing many hardships, so as to enquire from it about the incident of ‘revelation’, as well as about a part of the life history of that great benefactor of mankind. And the cave also replies in its mute language:
“This is the place of worship by the honourable one of Quraish. Before he attained to the office of prophethood he spent many days and many nights in here. He had selected this spot, which was away from uproar, for the purpose of prayers and worship. He spent the entire month of Ramadan here, and at other times also he took asylum in this locality every now and then. So much so that his dear wife knew that as and when he did not come home he must be busy in prayers on the mountain of Hira. And when she sent people after him they found him meditating and praying at this place.”
Before Muhammad (pbuh) attained to the office of prophethood, he used to reflect much upon two matters:
1 He studied thoroughly the book of existence and observed the luminosity, power and craftsmanship of Allah in the features of every existing thing. By conducting deep study of the skies and the stars and prudently considering the creatures on earth he was approaching nearer to his target day after day.
2 He meditated upon the onerous responsibility which, he knew, he had to shoulder. With all the corruption and deterioration of the human society in that time, he did not consider its reformation to be something impossible. However, the enforcement of reformatory programme, too, was not devoid of difficulties and hardship. Hence, he observed the tumultuous life of the Makkans and the voluptuousness of Quraysh and reflected upon the ways and means of their reformation.
He wondered at the people worshipping the lifeless and ineffective idols and showing humility before them and signs of discomfort appeared on his face. However, as he had not been ordained to mention the realities, he refrained from pointing them out to those people.