This Blog Series explores The Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) Leadership Model of Quranic Moral and Spiritual Values of Excellence, and is based on my Master’s Degree in Islamic Studies research, at ISRA’s Centre for Islamic Studies & Civilisation, Charles Sturt University.
In this first article, we introduce the Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) values based leadership model in terms of the key Quranic moral and spiritual values of excellence he both taught & embodied as his lifetime mission, that produced the greatest transformation in the society, consciousness and moral order of life in the Arabian Peninsula.
If we could state in one succinct metaphoric yet true statement what the committed leadership mission and goal of the Prophet (pbuh) of Islam was, according to countless historians and writers, it would be to transform society from darkness to illumination.
He unfailingly exhibited absolute confidence and belief in his leadership mission and message, which never weakened nor was it ever forsaken even the slightest, even in the most trying and difficult experiences. This strong willpower and determination – an intrinsic characteristic of a true leader, will be shown in various parts of this article.
The whole foundation of his leadership model and mission rested on the chosen role of conveying the final message of God to humanity and being a role model of the values, beliefs, principles and practices of the Holy Quran.
His wife Aisha as a first hand witness, sums up his mission’s success in her statement describing his value centred character – as the embodiment of the Quran. When asked about her husband, “O mother of the believers, tell me about the character of the Messenger of Allah, she replied, “Have you not read the Quran?” “Of course”, was the reply. She then added, “Verily, the character of the Prophet (pbuh) of Allah was the Quran.” (Ahsan, 2010)
All previous Prophets had a mission essentially to guide humanity to knowing, getting close to and serving God. But whereas all past Prophets focused on their own community and personal domains, Prophet (pbuh) Muhammad’s leadership mission had the unique additional focus on his mission’s role as being a guide to all mankind for all time periods.
The character of the Prophet (pbuh) of God was the Quran.
The uniqueness of his leadership mission was to guide humanity in achieving excellence in not only religious & social life but in every dimension of human life. His mission addressed the fact that human beings are not just physical beings with minds or hearts, but with inner spiritual faculties that have their own unique needs. To this end, he was fundamentally the teacher of their minds, souls and spirit whilst achieving the noble reward of consequently becoming the beloved of their hearts. (Gulen, 2005)
The essence of his values based leadership approach had as its primary goal that of helping humanity at all levels – individual, collective and state, to establish a solid balance between the material and spiritual life, the mind and soul, this world and the permanent eternal life after death, and between desires and discipline. (Gulen, 2005).
He both taught and embodied this key principle of balance: how to live a balanced life, demonstrating daily how humanity could live in total submission to their Creator in a balanced way, attaining the best of both worlds. (Ahsan, 2010)
When one studies this period of Prophetic history, we observe that with his mission was an opening for humanity to establish their lives on the highest universal values and principles of equality, respect for law, moral responsibility piety and justice and many more that will be investigated in this article.
Within a brief 23 year period of Prophethood, with limited means, intense and ongoing opposition, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) not only eradicated barbarism and savagery in the entire Arabia, (considered one of the most backward regions of the world: cultural, intellectual, and morally) but he deep rooted countless Quranic leadership values and virtues of excellence in the mind, spirit and hearts of both his community and future generations of Muslims (Dogan, 2014).
A key aspect of his mission’s success was his successful and confident demonstration of leadership roles in a multitude of disciplines: such as diplomacy, government, management, statesmanship, military life, spiritual, family, married life and more. (Mir, 2010) Under these multiple roles of powerful leadership, he shifted a country heading towards self-obliteration to a total transformation of their consciousness. Viewed widely as uncultured, uncivilised and uneducated, history witnessed the emergence shortly after his mission of generations of role models and world leaders in scholarship, culture, arts, business, sciences and other disciplines. (Elamin, 2008)
His leadership model overturned and changed the whole structure of life of the Arabs, he was a “change agent extraordinaire”, Noor (2005) calls it, who transformed the political, social and spiritual landscape of the Arabs. Widespread evil qualities such as greed, racism, fornication, crime, idolatry, gambling, corruption, child killing, societal disorders and more were the monumental adversities the Prophet (pbuh) faced and successfully dealt with. Not to mention, implanting and inculcating in people’s hearts and minds, the highest standards of universal values and qualities such that they became second nature to them.
This new faith or purification as Armstrong (2006) calls it included caring for the poor and needy, freeing slaves, performing daily acts of kindness and more. The new Muslims learned to embody virtues of compassion and more, acquiring responsible, caring spirits, and learning to purge themselves of diseases of the heart such as pride and selfishness and reach spiritual refinement. His redesign and reengineer of every aspect of life was key according to Noor (2005), as shall be explored in this article, whereby the internal and external constructs he created naturally led to a newly evolved consciousness in Arabia. (Elamin, 2008)
Written by Cynthia Aisha Meguid
Well-Being – Teacher, Educator, Consultant & Coach
This blog article is based on my Master’s Degree in Islamic Studies Research, at ISRA’s Centre for Islamic Studies & Civilisation, Charles Sturt University, Australia.
Continue reading Part 2: The Prophet Muhammad’s Leadership Model of Quranic Moral and Spiritual Values of Excellence – at the Individual Level
Thanks for your blog, nice to read. Do not stop.
Great to hear Mark, Thank you