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The prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) lived with his uncle Abu Talib after his grandfather, Abdul Muttalib's death. Raising Mohammad(Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)  and protecting him was of great concern for Abi Taleb, that he even took him with him as he travelled outside Mecca or Hejaz.

The prophet's first journey with his uncle Abi Talib was along with a trade caravan from Quraysh when he was 12 years old. On their way to the Levant, the caravan stopped in a region called "Al-Basra", where lived a Nasaara monk called "Bahira" who was of high respect among the Christians there. His residence was on the main caravan route and he regularly saw caravans passing by, carrying different goods destined to be sold in the great markets of Syria.

He was looking outside and caught sight of a caravan approaching. He noticed that this caravan was different; there was something special about it. He decided to invite the people to a meal and find out more. Bahira sent a message to the caravan that his hospitality was extended to all the members of the caravan. The caravan traders accepted the invitation and arrived at the monk’s place.

When they arrived, Bahira searched their faces looking for something. He said that he had offered his hospitality to everyone, was there anyone left behind? They said that they had left a young boy called Muhammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him) to look after the camels. Bahira insisted that they send someone to get Muhammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him) and bring him to the entertainment. When Bahira saw the face of prophet Muhammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him) he was delighted for he was aware from the scriptures of the arrival of a mighty prophet and he could see the signs on the young boy.

After the food, Bahira asked some of the people in the caravan about him and they referred him to Abi Taleb. Bahira approached Abu Talib and asked him of his relationship to Muhammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him). Abu Talib initially replied saying that he was his son upon which Bahira remarked that that could not be possible upon which Abu Talib confirmed that he was in fact his nephew. Bahira revealed to Abu Talib that Muhammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him) would be a great prophet one day. He said that when he had seen the caravan in the distance there was a cloud hanging over them, which was shading them from the great heat of the desert. When the caravan had stopped under a tree the cloud had also stopped above them.

Bahira said that he had seen the stones and the trees prostrating to Muhammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him) as he had been walking by. They only do this for a prophet of Allah. He looked at the Muhammad’s back and noticed the seal of the prophets, which was an oval shape protruding just below Muhammad’s shoulder blades. He said that this was one of the signs of a great prophet to come that was taught to them in their books.

Bahira said “This is the master of all humans, Allah will send him with a message which would be a mercy to all humans”. Bahira advised that Muhammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him) should be taken back to Makkah at once, if the Jews found out about Muhammad(peace and blessings of Allah be upon Him) they would try to kill him. Abu Talib took the advice of this wise old monk.  He cut the journey to the Levant and returned him to Mecca.

 

 

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