It’s important to know the history of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) even prior to his prophethood because those were the years that shaped the Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) reputation and image to the people of Mecca. His early years of virtue would soon precede a lifetime of nobleness and greatness.
After his grandfather passed away when the Prophet (SAW) was eight years old, Abu Talib took the young boy under his care. Abu Talib noticed that even at a young age, Muhammad (SAW) was always praying and thanking God despite the fact that everyone else in Mecca was worshiping idols. Like most men in Arabia at the time, Abu Talib was a businessman. When Muhammad (SAW) was 12 years old, he took him to Shaam on one of his business trips. On this trip, Abu Talib was encountered by a Christian monk named Bohayra. Bohayra recognized Muhammad (SAW) as a boy who would hold greatness in the future.
Around the age of 25, the Prophet (SAW) already had a good reputation. He was nicknamed Al-Ameen (the Trustworthy) for his honesty, trustworthiness, and respect. One of the wealthiest merchants of the Quraysh tribe at the time was a woman, Khadija daughter of Khuwaylid (RAA) . Khadijah (RAA) found these traits admirable and approached Muhammad (SAW) about going on a business trip to Syria for her. Meysara, Khadija’s (RAA) servant, accompanied him on this trip. Once again another prophecy was made of the Prophet (SAW) . As the Prophet (SAW) was standing under a tree, a monk questioned Meysara about the identity of the man. The monk then replied saying, “I swear to Allah (SWT) that he is no one except the Prophet.”
Khadijah (RAA) wasn’t the only person to recognize the good in the Prophet (SAW) . Everyone in Mecca realized the greatness in him. The incident of the Black Stone is a confirmation of that. The Kaaba had been in place long before the Prophet’s (SAW) existence. It dates back to the days of Prophet Ibrahim and Ismael (RAA) . At the time the Quraysh tribe was in control of the Kaaba, which was being used to conduct religious rituals. A flood, however, destroyed the walls of the Kaaba, and after its repair, the tribes began to dispute who would have the honor of placing the Black Stone, the stone which descended from Heaven, into the wall.
This dispute sparked a large controversy and even threatened the start of war. It was decided that the first man to walk by would decide what should be done. Through Allah’s (SWT) divine fate, this man ended up being Muhammad (SAW) . The 35-year-old Muhammad (SAW) , being the wise man that he was, decided to place the Black Stone in the middle of a large piece of cloth and told the leader of each tribe to carry one corner of the cloth. Together and equally, all the leaders of the tribes carried the Black Stone to the Kaaba, where Muhammad (SAW) then picked up the Black Stone himself and placed it into the wall. Muhammad (SAW) effectively and fairly solved the problem and even brought a new sense of unity and equality among the tribes.
Even before he became a Prophet, Muhammad’s (SAW) opinion was highly respected and revered by the people of Mecca. His reputation transcended all the land as Al-Ameen, and it was for this remarkable character that Allah (SWT) would choose him to spread His (SWT) message and be an example for all humankind.