The Heart of a Leader
All Muslims believe in the Sunnah of Prophet (SAWS). The goal of every Muslim is to be as close to Sunnah as possible. Some teachings of the Prophet Muhammad is easy to follow; like the sunnah of eating from the right hand, entering the house with the right foot, etc. But there are some sunnahs which are more big and difficult to follow.
One such Sunnah is mentioned in Sura Imran verse 159 which states: Thus, it is due to the mercy from Allah that you have been lenient with them, and had you been rough, hard hearted, they would certainly have dispersed from around you. Therefore, pardon them and seek forgiveness for them; and consult with them in the affair. So, when you have decided, then trust in Allah; (for) verily Allah loves those who trust (in Him)."
where believers were told not to come down from the mountain in the battle of Uhud. This was because the Muslims were small in number as opposed to the large army of disbelievers, and if the entry from the mountains were not guarded it would give access to the enemy to attack from behind. This was a trying time for the Muslim army, because they were on the brink of victory and booty was to be distributed.
The content of the verse works as some general instructions, but the revelation of the verse is about the Battle of 'Uhud. The Muslims who had ran away in the Battle of 'Uhud and were defeated, were burning in the fire of regret, remorse and sorrow. They gathered around the Prophet (S) and apologized. Then, the Lord issued the command of their general pardon by this verse.
They made a very grave mistake! Because of this mistake the Muslim army lost the battle of Uhud to the disbelievers. Allah further states in this verse that it is only because of the special love of Allah for the prophet that you are soft to people - in spite of the grave sin done in the battle.
Allah emphasized in the above verse that only because of the special love of Allah towards the Prophet SAWS that you are gentle with the people. Any leader in his position would be enraged at his followers. He would reprimand them, make them realize their mistake and give them cold behavior whenever they would approach him.
The Prophet (SAWS) not only did forgive them, but he treated them with the same respect as before, to the extent that he even sought their advice on important matters! Can you imagine or have come across a leader with such a great compassion for his subjects after they committed the grave mistake in the battle that put his life at huge risk!
Allah also emphasizes that because you are loving to them, they love you so much and if you were not gentle and kind as a leader, they would have run away from you. The primary responsibility of a leader is to make his subjects comfortable.
Any loss arising out of the mistake of others should not be attributed to them. We must believe that all good and loss is from Allah. Allah ordered the prophet (pbuh) to forgive the people who ran back from the battle of Uhud, those same people because of whom the bodies of the people of his loved ones were cut open, because of whom the prophet was bleeding after receiving fatal injuries.!
All of us in our every sphere of life are in some kind of leadership. We should not be harsh when a mistake is made by those under us. We should:
1. Forgive and let go.
2. Never remind of the mistake.
3.Don't make them uncomfortable.
4. Seek their opinion on further matters so as to not belittle them.
The only way this Sunnah can be kept alive is when Muslims follow this in their lives and the legacy is carried on.