Get the key ideas from

The First Muslim

The Story of Muhammad

By Lesley Hazleton
15-minute read
Audio available
The First Muslim: The Story of Muhammad by Lesley Hazleton

The First Muslim (2013) details the incredible story of the prophet Muhammad, the first member of the Islamic faith. These blinks take you back to before Muhammad’s birth and tell the complete story of God’s revelation to this prophet, how he spread Islam and what his contemporaries thought of his ideas.

  • Historians of all types
  • Students and scholars of Islam and its history
  • Critical readers who want to know more about the origins of Islam

Lesley Hazleton is a renowned Middle East specialist. Her other books include After the Prophet, which was selected as a finalist for the 2010 PEN nonfiction award.

Go Premium and get the best of Blinkist

Upgrade to Premium now and get unlimited access to the Blinkist library. Read or listen to key insights from the world’s best nonfiction.

Upgrade to Premium

What is Blinkist?

The Blinkist app gives you the key ideas from a bestselling nonfiction book in just 15 minutes. Available in bitesize text and audio, the app makes it easier than ever to find time to read.

Discover
3,000+ top
nonfiction titles

Get unlimited access to the most important ideas in business, investing, marketing, psychology, politics, and more. Stay ahead of the curve with recommended reading lists curated by experts.

Join Blinkist to get the key ideas from
Get the key ideas from
Get the key ideas from

The First Muslim

The Story of Muhammad

By Lesley Hazleton
  • Read in 15 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 9 key ideas
Upgrade to Premium Read or listen now
The First Muslim: The Story of Muhammad by Lesley Hazleton
Synopsis

The First Muslim (2013) details the incredible story of the prophet Muhammad, the first member of the Islamic faith. These blinks take you back to before Muhammad’s birth and tell the complete story of God’s revelation to this prophet, how he spread Islam and what his contemporaries thought of his ideas.

Key idea 1 of 9

Muhammad’s story begins with a vow made by his grandfather.

The story of Muhammad starts well before his birth – and it was unusual from the very beginning.

Muhammad’s grandfather was chief of the Hashim clan, a prominent grouping within the Quraysh tribe who, at the time, were a rich community that controlled the city of Mecca. His name was Abd al-Muttalib, and as a young man he found a freshwater spring known as Zamzam, which many people believed to be sacred.

Other members of the tribe, envying Abd al-Muttalib’s discovery, challenged his right to the spring. So, to convince them that he was the rightful owner, Abd al-Muttalib swore that if the gods gave him ten healthy sons, he would sacrifice one of them on the banks of the water source.

As fate would have it, Abd al-Muttalib was blessed with ten wonderful sons and was forced to keep his word. To make the decision, he threw ten arrows into the air near the stone of Hubal, a monolith that was sacred to the Quraysh. Each arrow bore the name of one son and the arrow to fall closest to the stone would seal the fate of the son whose name was written upon it. When the decision was made, Abd al-Muttalib’s favorite son, and Muhammad’s future father, Abdullah, was chosen.

With a heavy heart, Abd al-Muttalib prepared to sacrifice Abdullah. But tribal members stepped in, saying that there could be another way. Eventually, it was decided that Abd al-Muttalib should speak to a priestess, known as a kahina, from the city of Medina.

The kahina said that Abdullah’s life could be spared if an equivalent offering was sacrificed instead. Abd al-Muttalib was instructed to throw two arrows, one representing his son, the other ten camels. Every time it fell against his son, they’d have to increase the offering by an additional ten camels. Finally, after ten throws, Abd al-Muttalib got lucky. His son would be saved. And so the hundred camels were sacrificed. Afterward, Abdullah married a woman named Amina and the couple conceived Muhammad on the same night.

But fate would take another turn. The following day, Muhammad’s father, Abdullah, left on a trade expedition and would later die of unknown causes.

Upgrade to continue Read or listen now

Key ideas in this title

Upgrade to continue Read or listen now

No time to
read?

Pssst. Sign up to your secret to success: key ideas from top nonfiction in just 15 minutes.
Created with Sketch.