More than 1400 years ago in Arabia the people were living very much in fear. They feared their neighbours. They feared other tribes. They even feared their idols. For this was the time before Islam.
The Arabs were worshipping idols. In their ignorance they would bury their newly born daughters alive. As Islam began to spread among Arabs such cruel practices stopped. For Islam taught love and peace. It taught kindness and respect.
Prophet Muhammad (salAllahu alayhi wsalam) himself was a very kind and loving person. He treated every one, young and old, with kindness and respect.
Because Prophet Muhammad (salAllahu alayhi wsalam) was spreading the word of God, because he was changing, for better, the lives of many Arabs and because some Arabs felt that by the teachings of Muhammad their old idols were losing power they disliked Muhammad and planned to kill him. Every time they tried to kill him, they failed. This angered the enemies of Islam even more. So they began to harass him in every way they knew.
One old woman made a habit of throwing rubbish on Prophet Muhammad (salAllahu alayhi wsalam) whenever he passed from her house! Muhammad (salAllahu alayhi wsalam) had to pass that house daily on the way to the mosque.
Even when the old woman threw rubbish on him, he would pass silently without showing any anger or annoyance. This was a regular, daily event.
One day when the Prophet was passing by, the woman was not there to throw the rubbish. He stopped, and asked the neighbour about her well-being, and wondering why she wasn't dropping any rubbish on him.
The neighbour informed the Prophet that the woman was sick on bed. The Prophet politely asked permission to visit the woman. When allowed he entered the house, the woman thought that he had come there to take his revenge when she was unable to defend herself because of sickness.
But the Prophet (salAllahu alayhi wsalam) assured her that he had come to her, not to take any revenge, but to see her and to look after her needs, as it was the command of Allah that if any one is sick, a Muslim should visit him and should help him if his help is needed.
The old woman was greatly moved by this kindness and love of the Prophet. By the example of greatness of Muhammad, she understood that he was truly the Prophet of God and Islam was the true religion. She accepted Islam at once, Alhamdulilah.
Key Points: Rights of Neighbours in Islam, Kindness, Visiting and caring for the ill, Forgiveness.