Islam History 4 / Muhammad's mother visited by "spirits"
Muhammad’s mother often claimed to be visited by spirits and was deeply involved in the occult. When Muhammad was 4 years old, he began having seizures. He began to have visitations even in his childhood. According to one account he claimed that a heavenly being split his stomach open, stirred his insides around, and sewed him back up.
After his marriage to Khadijah, Muhammad would often retire to a cave on Mt. Hira, about 3 miles from Mecca, to meditate. Muhammad belonged to a group called the Hanifas, or seekers of truth. This group sought light through inner consciousness and meditation, it was during one of his meditations that he first began to receive revelations.
As an adult, Muhammad began to receive revelations in 610 A.D. when he was 40. Muhammad claimed that the angel Gabriel came to him and ordered him three times to recite. The word Koran means recite. As this was repeated, he felt an increasing physical pressure. From that point on, he continued to receive revelations for 22 years until his death in 632 A.D.
During his revelations, he would fall down and jerk in convulsions, his eyes would roll back in his head, he would foam at the mouth, and he would sweat profusely. When having his revelations, he sometimes heard a bell ringing in his ears, and he usually had severe headaches afterwards. He said he felt as if he were being strangled. Sometimes he would simply appear intoxicated. They said at times he would snore like a camel and his face would change in appearance.