On another occasion, an old woman went to the Prophet (saw) and asked him to pray for her:
she specifically wanted him to invoke Allah to grant her entry into Paradise. The Prophet said: “No old woman enters Paradise.” The woman, like the man from the previous example, walked away, but beyond being disappointed, she actually began to cry – and which man or woman could not cry upon being told that he or she could not enter Paradise? The Prophet than called her back and said, “Did you not hear the saying of Allah…?” Having said this, the Prophet then proceeded to recite the following verse, making it clear that, when a woman enters Paradise, she enters it as a young woman, even if, in this world, she died an old woman: “Verily, we have created them (maidens) of special creation. And made them virgins. Loving (their husbands only), equal in age.” (Quran 56:35-37)
When the Prophet laughed, he did so in obedience to his Lord. He would not laugh frivolously or needlessly as a means of passing time – which is the way many of us laugh today. On one occasion, when the Prophet mounted his riding animal, about to embark on a journey, he made the supplication of travelling; and then he said; “O Allah, forgive me my sin(s), for indeed, none can forgive sins except for You.” Having said this, the Prophet began to laugh. His Companions asked, “O Messenger of Allah, why are you laughing?” He said, “Your Lord laughs when (His) slave says, ‘O Allah, forgive me my sins, for indeed, none can forgive sins except for You.’ Allah says, ‘My slave knows that none forgives except Me (and yet he still utters that
The Prophet told his Companions the story of the last man to exit from the Hellfire. That man, upon exiting the Hellfire will ask Allah, little by little, for more and more blessings. In the end, the man will be made to understand the Allah will give him ten times more than he could have ever dreamed of himself. The man will then say to Allah, “Are you making fund of me (by making me think that I will get so much), and You are the Lord of all that exists?”When the Prophet finished relating this saying, he began to laugh.
Allah guided the Prophet to always do what was right. As a result of that guidance, the Prophet would always do what was befitting and proper considering the circumstances. During times of happiness and prosperity, and during the leisure time, he would play and joke around in a moderate manner. During sermons and speeches, he would be serious in his demeanor, and he would cry out of the fear of Allah. The Prophet was truly honored and blessed, for every smile he gave, every tear he shed, every joke he made, and every advice he gave is a part of his Sunnah. Every aspect of his life is related in books of hadith. A narrator might have traveled hundreds of miles to learn about a hadith which related a story of how the Prophet smiled or cried or showed kindness to a little child. Even his laughter is recorded in books that are deemed sacred by Muslims worldwide. Then all glory be to Allah, Who has raised the ranking of His Messenger to such a high level that even his joking and laughing are related by one trustworthy narrator, from another trustworthy narrator, from another trustworthy narrator – as if that laugh is a compulsory deed that we must follow. O Allah, send prayers and salutation upon the Prophet, upon his family, and upon his Companions for as long as the sun rises in the morning and sets in the evening.
(Prepared by Dr. ‘Aid Al-Qarni)