Why the Holy Prophet PBUH was Unlettered?

Why the Holy Prophet PBUH was Unlettered?

One of the facts of the prophetic biography is that he was an unlettered/Ūmmi. In the Qur’anic verses, Hadiths and Seerah books, the prophet Muhammad PBUH has been mentioned with different titles and epithets; “unlettered” is one of those attributes. In the Noble Qur’an, twice in Surah A’rāf in verses 157 and 158, this attribute is specifically mentioned for him:
“Also for those who follow the Messenger, the unlettered prophet they find described in the Torah that is with them, and in the Gospel…” (A’rāf: 157)
“So believe in God and His Messenger, the unlettered prophet who believes in God and His words. Follow him so that you may be rightly guided.” (A’rāf: 158)
The meaning of being “unlettered” of the Messenger of God is that he did not study with anyone before his prophet-hood and he did not learn science and knowledge from anyone, and he was not a student of any human teacher; rather his teacher and mentor has been Allāh Almighty Himself and the Lord of the worlds. He, like other prophets, has learned the highest sciences and knowledge in the school of the revelation.
The infidels and polytheists made efforts to deny the attribution of the Qur’an to the revelation and the unseen world. They tried to consider it as the intellectual exudation of the Prophet, who slandered God and took help from others in composing and authoring it. The Holy Qur’an explicitly refers to these crude ideas and baseless projections and dispersal of the disbelievers and then responds to them.
Therefore, the fact that the Prophet Mohammad, peace be upon him, was an unlettered is one of the obvious signs of the miracle of the Qur’an and one of the strong reasons for the prophet-hood of the last Prophet PBUH. The prophet was an unlettered that means this divine book (the Holy Qur’an), which the worlds cannot challenge it, has no source other than the divine revelation and its revelation has definitely been done by Allāh Almighty.
How beautiful Shaikh Sa’di has said: An orphan/unlettered who did not write the Qur’an / but washed up the library of several nations. (Būstān of Sa’di)
Allāmah Sayyed Abūl-Hassan Nadvi writes about this verse of Sa’di: “In this poem, he (Sa’di) has summarized the story of that great revolution which is superior to all old and new revolutions in the history of religions and ethics and in the field of sciences and customs, in the world of civilizations, cultures, concepts and values. He says: How was this amazing miracle performed by an unlettered person who did not go to school even for a day and did not write a single line? And how did he start a new scientific era that would last forever? And how did he create this amazing profound scientific explosion which is superior to all ages and periods of history? How was this boundless sea of science and knowledge created while being unlettered? This is a mystery that nothing but faith and belief in divine power can solve it; it is a rare and surprising thing that the intellect would not have believed it if it had not been consistent and obvious and had not been observed and proven.” (Nadvi, Towards Madīnah: 131-132)


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