Muhammad al-Mustafa, the last Prophet of God, was born in Mecca, Arabia, on 17th Rabī‘ al-Awwal, 1st Year of ‘Ămul Fil (570 AD).
Prophet Muhammad (God’s blessings and peace be upon him) was born in the family of Banu Hăshim, of the tribe of Quraysh, who were the most honoured of the Arab families. Banu Hăshim were descendants of Ismael, the son of Prophet Abraham.
The Prophet’s grandfather, ‘Abdul Muttalib, was the chief of Banu Hashim and also the guardian of the Ka‘bah. His father was called ‘Abdullăh and his mother, Ămina. His father passed away a few months before his birth. At the age of six, the Prophet lost his mother as well and was placed under the care of his grandfather, ‘Abdul Muttalib. But his grandfather also passed away after four years; and at this time the Prophet’s uncle, Abu Tâlib, took charge of him and became his guardian, taking him to his own house. Thus the Prophet mostly grew up in his uncle’s house and even before reaching the age of adolescence used to accompany his uncle on business journeys by caravan.
Prophet Muhammad did not receive any schooling; yet, after reaching the age of maturity he became famous for his wisdom, courtesy, trust-worthiness and truthfulness. He soon became known as “the truthful, the trustworthy – as-sădiq al-amín”. His uncle Abu Tălib used to say, “We have never heard any lies from Muhammad, nor seen him misconduct himself or make mischief. He never laughs unduly nor talks untimely.”
As a result of his sagacity and trustworthiness, Khadija bint Khuwaylid, a Qurayshi lady well-known for her wealth, appointed him as the manager of her businesses and left in his hands the task of conducting her commercial affairs. The Prophet once journeyed to Damascus with Khadija’s merchandise and because of his abilities made an outstanding profit. Before long she asked to become his wife and the Prophet accepted her proposal. After the marriage, at the age of twenty five years, the Prophet began the life of a manager of his wife’s fortunes. By the age of forty, he gained a widespread reputation for wisdom and trustworthiness.
He refused to worship idols, as was the common religious practice of the Arabs of the time. Occasionally he would make spiritual retreats to the cave of Hiră’ outside Mecca, in which he prayed and discoursed secretly with God.