Let’s look at some examples of Mohammad’s pride and self-interest. Mohammad was proud, arrogant and quick to take offense. As we watch the news we often see examples of Islamists who were also quick to take offence and to show a distorted view of justice. We suggest that they are simply following their prophet’s lead.
For example, when Mohammad finally conquered Mecca he did so without a battle. He issued a general amnesty for the inhabitants of Mecca and had only 10 people executed. There was one person of particular interest to us. She was the slave of an apostate (that is a man who had left Islam after converting). Her master was also killed that day for his apostasy. But her only recorded crime was that she had sung insulting songs about Mohammad several years earlier. This event speaks to the pride of Mohammad and it also gives us insight into the modern Islamic reaction to any perceived insult to Mohammad.
Another man who was murdered at Mohammad’s request was Abu Afak. As a man of great age (reportedly he was 120 years old) this person could pose no significant threat to Mohammad. But he was killed because he lampooned Mohammad in a poem. The murder was done by Salem bin 'Omayr on the request of Mohammad, who had asked, "Who will deal with this rascal for me?"
Another story in the hadith gives us insight into the degree of intimidation and control Mohammad exercised over the people around him. Here we should consider the situation with Zaid, Mohammad’s adopted son who had married a very beautiful woman. Prior to the advent of Islam, the Arabian tribes all considered adoption of orphans a virtuous thing and the adopted child was viewed the same as a natural child of the parents. One day, Mohammad visited Zaid’s home and saw Zaid’s wife, Zainab in her housedress. He was attracted to her. When Zaid heard about the visit and perceived that Mohammad was interested in Zainab, he was very quick to offer to leave her to Mohammad. Initially Mohammad refused, allegedly because their close relationship would have prohibited marriage by Arabic custom. Soon, however, he delivered a verse from the supposedly-eternal Koran saying that none of his soldiers were related to him (of course, this category included Zaid). Later, he delivered another verse from the Koran (Surah 33:37) that specifically named Zaid and authorized Mohammad to marry his wife after Zaid divorced her. Of course, this meant that Zaid was no longer a close relation of Mohammad and Zaid could divorce her and give her to Mohammad – which is exactly what happened.
The net effect of this gratification of Mohammad’s desire has been that Sharia law now forbids the practice of adoption.
- Mohammad - Pride and Self-Interest