Ramadhan Reflections Day #14 🌙
The Prophet (ﷺ) is reported to have said, "Verily you shall conquer Constantinople. What a wonderful leader will her leader be, and what a wonderful army will that army be!" [Musnad Ahmad, Al-Hakim, al-Jami’ al-Saghir]
Exactly 857 years after Hijra, the Muslims, led by Sultan Muhammad Al-Fatih, defeated the Byzantine Empire and took control of Constantinople, the capital of their Empire. The Muslims renamed the city Istanbul. Sultan Muhammad Al-Fatih was 21 years old at the time, and Istanbul has remained in Muslim hands ever since.
This one Hadith had inspired the Ummah for centuries. Muslims had exerted great effort and displayed great zeal to conquer Constantinople and become the person whom Muhammad (saw) praised. Since the time of Caliph Mu'awiyah, to companions such as Khalid ibn Zayd, followed by many Ottoman Caliphs and their progeny all fought with the aim of conquering Constantinople, a city which Napoleon had described as "the capital of the world". Prophecies such as this are abundantly found in Islam. Some of which have already transpired and proven true and others which wait to become reality. However, should we merely wait for good prophecies to materialise, or become the catalyst to ensure their fruition? Could the conquest of Constantinople have happened without the believers working for it?
The Prophet (ﷺ) was also reported to have said: "An age will surely come when people gather and pray in the mosques, while there is not a single believer amongst them." [Sahih Al-Bhukari]
This is a warning from the Messenger (saw) that whilst people will continue to attend the Masajid, they will not believe and practice Islam. The believers are not insulated from the ideologies that demand the acceptance of their practices, replacing religiosity with a cultural identity comfortable with a compromised belief. Whilst this prophecy paints a disturbing future, should we as Muslims wait for the inevitable and be doomed to our fate?
Dear Muslims, prophecies should be used to encourage the believer to achieve and fulfil the great promise and success which they mention.