“When the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) went to ta’if, he had just faced the worst two weeks of his prophethood.  He had lost his wife Khadijah, his first wife, and his grandfather, his uncle… and when he went to spread Islam in Ta’if, the people there absolutely humiliated him.  They spat at him, chased him down narrow alleyways, threw stones at him.  For two weeks.

He was at one of the worst lows he experienced as a prophet.

Later, the event that is known to be Israa’ wal mi’raj happened, the holy ascension where Jibreel, the chief of angels, took the prophet (pbuh) to Masjid al-Aqsa where he lead all of the other prophets in prayer, and then ascended to the heavens to see paradise.

It was a kind of healing, a reward, a way that God comforted the prophet after his traumatic experiences. Very touching, very detailed, but that’s not the point of this post.

One of the things that happened when Jibreel was showing Muhammad (pbuh) around, was that he showed him his Ummah, the Muslims who follow him, his people.

Keep in mind that Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) is the final prophet. There is none after him.  And at the time of Israa’ wal mi’raj he had about a hundred followers at most.  A hundred was huge to him.

So he saw a crowd, a huge crowd, and tearing up, he asked Jibreel, ‘Are those my followers?’ And Jibreel said, ‘no,’ and he turned the prophet around…. and the prophet saw millions…billions of people standing in front of him. Jibreel said, ‘that is your ummah,’  and the prophet, peace and blessings be upon his soul, cried.”

-Reem Zohny