The Souq KSA or Souq Okaz was filled with an incredible range of activities: the buyers and sellers; poetry contests and sports competitions; various tribes offering acts of charity, such as feeding the poor, lending a hand to beggars, paying ransom and freeing prisoners, and settling disputes. History of the tribes came from Saudi Arabia most beautiful city of Mecca, Ta’if and Yathrib (Medina), and as far away as Bahrain, Oman, Yemen, Syria and Iraq, setting up their red leather tents up on the outskirts of the bazaar, with each tribe waving its own banner.
The tribes all brought with them goods to sell, as well as their most talented poets, who tried to outdo each other in praising their tribe. Even within the crowded bazaar there were more sordid happenings. Dozens of vices were in abundance for those who sought gambling or prostitution, and sought to lure the wide-eyed Bedouin boys who entered the city for the first time. And of course, stealing, cheating and exploitation were an integral part of bazaar life.
Historical background of Souq KSA
The Souq KSA was full of an incredible range of activities: buyers and sellers; poetry competitions and sports competitions; various tribes offering acts of charity, such as feeding the poor, lending a hand to beggars, paying ransom and freeing prisoners, settling disputes. The tribes came from Mecca, Ta’if and Yathrib (Medina), and as far away as Bahrain, Oman, Yemen, Syria and Iraq, setting up their red leather tents on the outskirts of the bazaar, with each tribe waving its own banner.
Muhammad visited Souq Okaz
The Souk KSA was truly a colourful carnival of people, goods and activities. Prophet Muhammad lived in that era (between the 6th and 7th centuries AD), experiencing the crowded bazaars of Mecca and the Souk Okaz. He had the profound wisdom to choose what was good for him. Although it seemed that almost everyone else accepted the seedy side of the bazaar, Muhammad prudently avoided trouble, judging according to his principles and beliefs the actions of his society, rather than giving in to what society considered acceptable, even though it was wrong.
We know from the Hadith, (a short narration relating to sayings or deeds of the Prophet), that when he was twenty years old, Muhammad heard the famous speech delivered by the preacher Qiss ibn Saada in Souk KSA: “Only God is eternal. He is One and He alone is to be worshipped”. It is emblematic that Muhammad stood and listened attentively to the preacher as the crowd swarmed. This shows his early interest in religion. Muhammad kept this sermon in mind until he was anointed Prophet almost two decades later. The fact that he was so taken with the words of Qiss is significant. It was not at all ordinary at the time for a 20-year-old to ignore the temptations of the bazaar in order to listen to a sermon. It shows how people, particularly young people, can have the ability to choose the right path, even when surrounded by those who try to lead them astray.