At that time, the whole world, especially Arabia, was steeped in ignorance, corruption, and turmoil. The Arabs were suffering immensely from superstitions and unchasteness. Ignorance had darkened the lives of the Arabs, who were leading tormented lives. Plunder and murder were quite prevalent – plunder of the people’s meager properties and unjust killing!
Most shameful of all was their worship of lifeless statues -idols. False beliefs and class differences were strong. What was lacking was law and justice. The apathetic, wealthy people amassed wealth by exploiting the weak and by overcharging the orphan and the widow. They lorded over the poor class and exploited them.
Their manners in business were so illogical and unjust that they would hold women responsible for their husbands’ debts and would detain the husbands for the indebtedness of their poor wives.
Instead of acquiring knowledge and virtue, they prided themselves in their ancestors and in the large numbers of their relatives; sometimes they even went to cemeteries 4and counted the number of their dead relatives to prove there were more people in their tribe than in other tribes.
Murder, bloodshed, drinking, and illegitimate sexual intercourse were quite ordinary and commonplace. Amr ul-Qays, the famous Arab poet, discussed his satanic sexual relationships with his cousin `Anizah. Curiously, such poems were ranked among the greatest works of literature and were hung in the Ka’aba.
Such was the situation and moral conditions of a miserable society out of whose dark horizon came the light of Islam.
It is crystal clear that a person who not only is not affected by such a corrosive society, but also grieves over it and attempts to combat it, possesses a great divine character and is competent to lead people and guide them onto the path of salvation
All went to the idol-temples except the Prophet who, without being taught by anybody, made his way to Mount Hira, the mountain where he devotedly worshipped the Creator of the universe and praised His glory and power.
`And you did not recite before it any book, nor did you transcribe one with your right hand, for then could those who say untrue things have doubted (Holy Quran, 29:48).
Favored by Almighty God, he distinguished his path from the very beginning, denounced the wrong manners of his people without any hesitation or fear, and proceeded against those wrong deeds and beliefs.
Not only was not one single moment of his blessed life spent in idolatry, but, as we have already mentioned, he hated to hear the names of idols.
His chasteness and purity were known to all. His extreme honesty led the people to give him the title of `the Trustworthy’, and this great virtue led Khadija to trust him with her commercial property.
The behavior of the Prophet toward the people and his manners were so pleasant and excellent that they attracted all people. ‘Ammar said, `The Prophet and I were engaged as shepherds before the advent of the prophetic mission. One day I suggested to him, `Let’s go to the Fakh pasturage’. He agreed.
`The next day I went there and saw that he had preceded me but prevented his sheep from grazing there. I asked him the reason. He replied, `I did not wish my sheep to graze here before your sheep because we had taken this decision together’. (Bihar ul-Amrar, Vol. 16, p.224)
Thus the Prophet took a different direction than his people and was by no means infatuated with tribal customs and moods. In reality, under the control of the divine power, he advanced on his path of evolution and perfection.
For all these reasons, people had great respect for him and relied heavily on his views in solving their problems.