At first, Maulid Nabi celebrated to resurrect spirit of moslems because at the time moslems fought hard defending their life from European Salib army. They were French, Germany, and England. We recognize that time as Salib war or the Crusade. At 1099 M, Salib army were successful to conquer Yerussalem and changed Masjidil Aqsho into a church. Moslems had lost their spirit and brotherhood. Politically , Islam was divided into many kingdoms and sultanates although there was a khalifah from Bani Abbas dynasty in Baghdad, but it was just a symbol of spiritual unity.
Sultan Salahuddin Al Ayyubi (Saladin) who led during 1174-1193 M/ 570-590 H in Bani Ayyub dynasty was a good leader for his common people. The centre of his sultanate was located in Cairo, Egypt and his authority was as far as Egypt to Suriah and Arabian cape. He said “ Moslem’s spirit must be revived with upgrading their love to their prophet”. So, he appealed that 12 Rabi’ul Awwal (Muhammad SAW birthday) to be celebrated by moslems in this world.
When Salahuddin asked agreement from Khalifah in Baghdad, An Nashir, he agreed with that idea. So, at Dzulhijjah 579 H (1183 M) along pilgrimage season, Salahuddin as a commander of Haromain gave instruction to socialize this for all moslems everywhere, that 580H (1184 M), 12 Rabi’ul Awal was celebrated as Maulid Nabi day and it was filled with some activities that could make moving on spirits of moslems. Salahuddin was opposed by some ulama because they were sure it was bid’ah and formal celebration in Islam was just idulfitri and iduladha. But Salahuddin could give answer that this Maulid Nabi celebration was an activity to adorn religion magnificence, not ritually. So, it couldn’t to be categorized into deviation.
One of activities that was organized by Sultan Salahuddin in firstly Maulid Nabi celebration (1184 M/ 580 H) was competition of prophet history writing and prayers of adoration for prophet. All ulama and people of letters were invited to join it. And the first winner is Syaikh Ja’far al Barzanji who wrote kitab al Barzanji that become most popular until now to be read in many places during Maulid Nabi celebration. Al Barzanji tells about Muhammad’s life, and it’s name was put from the creator name, Syaikh Ja’far Al Barzanji bin Husin bin Abdul Karim.
And in next period, Maulid Nabi that was organized by Sultan Salahuddin brought a positiveness. Moslems had a new spirits to face Salib war, so in 1187 M (583 H) Yerussalem was back to moslem’s authority and Masjidil Aqsho became mosque again until now..and here after, Insyaallah… (_nd)