In the famous book “Raheeq Al-Makhtoom”, which is the most popular biography of Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s), the book covers the story (among many others) of the start of idol worship in the land of Arabia. The book mentions that after Prophet Ibraheem (A.S.) and Prophet Ismaeel’s (A.S.) deaths, most people continued to follow the teachings of these two prophets that primarily centered on the belief in monotheism (belief in One God, Allah). However, with the passage of time, people in Arabia started to deviate from this core belief and then during the time of a person named Amr bin Luhai, things took a turn for the worse. Amr was the chief of the Khuza’a tribe and was known to be a righteous person of the times and was well respected by his tribesmen. He used to visit Syria frequently for business and trade. During his trips, he noticed people worshiping idols as a means to reach Allah. He didn’t see this as inappropriate and on his way back brought an idol named Hubal and placed it in the middle of Kaaba in Makkah. Accordingly, he started worshiping it and instructed his tribesmen to do the same. This eventually turned into a full fledged practice that spread all over Arabia and beyond (due to the influence of his tribe and them being in Makkah.)
Eventually, this led to more prominent idols spread all over Arabia with one named Al-Mushallah in the area near the Red Sea, Al-Laat in the area of the present city of Taif, Al-Uzza in the valley of Nakhlah, and so on. Amr bin Luhai is also known to have dug up old idols (Wadd, Suwa‘, Yaguth, Ya‘uk and Nasr) from the times of Prophet Noah that are also mentioned in the Quran. Eventually, as time passed, idols made their way in most people’s homes and other places of worship and thus the practice was completely rooted in people’s daily lives when Prophet Muhammad was born.