Muhammad was a very simple person and spent all his life in simplicity. He was very unceremonious and informal in his habits. He ate whatever he was given, wore very thick and coarse cloth, even when he was the ruler of a state and undisputed leader of the people. He sat on the floor, bare ground or a mat without any hesitation, alone or in the company of other people. He ate bread made from coarse flour and even spent days on mere dates. He wore simple clothes and did not like display or show. He was by nature simple and liked simplicity and informality in everything.
Ibn Masud said that God’s Messenger slept on a reed mat and got up with the mark of it on his body. He said, “O God’s Messenger! I wish you would order us to spread something out for you and make something.” The Prophet replied, “What have I to do with the world, I am like a rider who rests for a while under the shade of a tree, then goes off and leaves it.” Ubaid-Allah bin Muhsin reported God’s Messenger as saying, “If anyone among you is secure in mind in the morning, healthy in body and has food for the day, it is as though the whole world has been brought into his Possession.”
Abu Hurairah reported God’s Messenger as saying, “Look at those who are inferior to you and do not look at those who are superior to you, for that is more likely to keep you from despising God’s Favor on you.” Abu Talha said, “When we complained to God’s Messenger of hunger and raised our clothes to show we were each carrying a stone over our belly, he raised his clothes and showed that he had two stones on his belly.”
He liked simple living and wanted his family to lead a simple life and abstain from ostentatious living. He often wore thick clothes. His bed was sometimes of rough blanket sometimes of skin filled with palm fibers and sometimes of ordinary coarse cloth.. In the ninth year of Al-Hijrah, when the Islamic state had extended from Yemen to Syria, its ruler had only one bed and one dry water-bag of skin. A’isha reported that when he died, there was nothing in the house to eat except some barley.
Once Umar entered Muhammad’s house and noticed the state of the furniture in it. Muhammad himself had only one sheet of cloth round him to cover the lower part of his body. There was one simple bed, with one pillow filled with nut fibre; on one side of the room was some barley and in one corner near his feet was an animal skin. There were some water-bag skins hanging beside his bed. Umar said that on seeing this tears came into his eyes. God’s Messenger asked the reason for his tears. He replied, “O God’s Messenger! Why shouldn’t I cry! The strings of the bed have left marks on your body. This is a small room with all your furniture, I can see what there is. The Kaiser of Rome and Kisra of Persia enjoy luxurious living while you, God’s Messenger, and the Chosen One, live like this.” He said, “Ibn Khattab! Don’t you like that they choose this world and we choose the Hereafter?”.
In short, Muhammad lived and liked a simple life and enjoyed every minute of it. He taught his companions, through his personal example, to lead a simple life and not to be ostentatious.