“For he is a human being, but not like human beings, as a ruby is a stone, but not like other stones”*
To mark the occasion of the Mawlid, Muslims worldwide celebrate the birth of Prophet Muhammad, PBUH. People come together to not only sing his praises, but to know his character, learn from his wisdom, and pray for blessings upon him and his community.
As the last Messenger of God, he is a mercy to humanity. In this time of unease, uncertainty and oppression, studying the character of our Prophet – how he interacted with his loved ones, his students, his allies, and even his enemies – gives contemporary Muslims an ethical roadmap of how to uphold good and prevent evil.
So yes, we sing praise-songs, we share poetry, we attend Mawlid events – but we also acquaint ourselves with his characteristics, emulate his behavior, and respond to the same kinds of oppressions to which he, PBUH, responded and in the same manner. (Of course, there also are Muslims don’t believe in celebrating the Prophet Muhammad’s birth month. After all, we are not a monolithic community.)
Every year I share a curated list of poetry and praise-songs from around the world. If you want more, here are the links to my previous lists from 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, and 2013. So click through the pages, region by region and find your favorites as well as discovering some new ones. But before we start our world tour of praise-songs, let us first listen to the beautiful recitation from Surat al-Ahzab by Indonesian Qari Muzammil Hasballah: