Today, members of Tanzania’s Muslims community join with their fellows across the world to celebrate Mawlid al-Nabi, the anniversary of the Prophet Muhammad’s birth.
Muhammad was also very religious, occasionally taking journeys of devotion to sacred sites near Mecca. On one of his pilgrimages in 610, he was meditating in a cave on Mount Jabal aI-Nour.
The Angel Gabriel appeared and relayed the word of God: “Recite in the name of your Lord who creates man from a clot! Reciting for your lord is most generous….” These words became the opening verses of sūrah (chapter) 96 of the Qur’an.
Most Islamic historians believe Muhammad was initially disturbed by the revelations and that he didn’t reveal them publicly for several years.
Islamic tradition holds that the first persons to believe were his wife, Khadija and his close friend Abu Bakr (regarded as the successor to Muhammad by Sunni Muslims). Soon, Muhammad began to gather a small following, initially encountering no opposition.
Muhammad settled in Medina, building his Muslim community and gradually gathering acceptance and more followers.
The death of Muhammad
After the conflict with Mecca was finally settled, Muhammad took his first true Islamic pilgrimage to that city and in March, 632, he delivered his last sermon at Mount Arafat.
Upon his return to Medina to his wife’s home, he fell ill for several days. He died on June 8, 632, at the age of 62, and was buried at al-Masjid an-Nabawi (the Mosque of the Prophet) one of the first mosques built by Muhammad in Medina.
This article has been compiled from various sources by a Daily News Digital reporter