Friday, August 31, 2012

A Prisoner Unsurpassed in his Patience

A’li A’bid (A’li Ibn Hasan Al-Muthallath) was one of the children of Imam Hasan (a.s.) who had been imprisoned by Mansur Dawaaniqi and had died while still in prison.  A’li A’bid was unsurpassed in his patience, worship and remembrance of God.
When Mansur arrested the descendants of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) and the children of Imam Hasan (a.s.), he placed them in a prison that was so dark that day could not be differentiated from night, except by means of the recitations and acts of worship of A'li A’abid. These acts were disciplined, orderly and continuous, and therefore made the others aware of the time for prayers.
One day, due to the hardships of captivity and the weight of his fetters, A'bdullah Ibn Hasan Al-Muthanna lost patience and in a state of great agitation, said to A'li A’abid:
“Do you not witness our misfortunes and adversities?  Do you not pray to God to grant us relief from this suffering of ours?”
A'li A’abid remained silent for a while after which he said, “O’ Uncle!  There exists for us a (lofty) rank in Paradise, which we can never achieve except by exhibiting patience over theseor even more severe adversities, and there exists for Mansur a dreadful place within Hell, which he shall never reach except by subjecting us to such persecution.  If we are patient, we shall soon find ourselves in ease and comfort, for death is not very far from us.  But if you desire, I shall pray for our deliverance, but in that case, Mansur shall not reach that stage of wretchedness, which has been ordained for him, within Hell.”
Hearing this, A'bdullah immediately said, “We shall be patient.”
Hardly three days had passed when, A'li A’abid passed away while in a state of prostration.  A'bdullah thought him to be asleep and said, “Wake up my nephew.”
As they attempted to move him, they found that he would not wake up and it was then they realized that he had died.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Judgement for the Drunk

It has been reported by Kulaini on the authority of Hazrat Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s.) that a case was decided by Hazrat Ali (k.u.w) in such a way that it was never decided before and that it was the first case after the demise of the Holy Prophet(S.A.).

“During the caliphate of Hazrat Abu Bakr a man was found drunk and brought before the Caliph. The Caliph asked him as to whether he had drunk wine. In reply the man admitted to have drunk.
The Caliph asked him: “Why did you drink when it has been prohibited in Islam?”
The man replied: “I am residing in the neighborhood of some people who are habitual drinkers. Although I am a Muslim, I have never heard that wine has been prohibited in Islam.” 
Hearing this Hazrat Abu Bakr looked at Hazrat Umar with a question mark in his eyes. Hazrat Umar said: “This is just one of the cases that no one else than Ali (a.s.) could decide.”
When the case was referred to Hazrat Ali (a.s.), he sent the man round in the city with some persons to ask the people as to whether anyone had recited to him the verse of the holy Quran whereby wine was totally prohibited. And when it was proved that none had done so, the man was released with a warning never to drink in future. 
(Also carried by Nasikhut Tawarikh, vol. 2, p. 731; Buharij, vo1. 9, p.483; Manaqib, vol. 2, p.178)

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Abuzar: The Great Companion of the Prophet (s.a.)

The aged and great companion of the prophet died of hunger. He and the members of his family lived in extremely hard conditions and had to suffer unprecedented miseries. Their children also passed away due to lack of food.
It has been narrated that after the death of their children AbuZar and his wife grew very weak on account of hunger. One day AbuZar said to his wife: "Let us go upto that mound. It is possible that we may find some wild fruits there". They went upto the mound. Inclement winds were blowing and they could not find anything to eat. AbuZar began to faint. Although very cold wind was blowing but AbuZar was perspiring and wiped his sweat again and again. When his wife looked at him she realized that he was going to die. She began to weep. AbuZar asked her why she was weeping. She replied: "Why should I not weep? You are breathing your last on this barren land, and I don't have even a piece of cloth which maybe used as a shroud for you and me". Her words grieved AbuZar very very much. He said to her: "Go and stand by the side of the road. It is possible that you may meet a believer who may be passing that way". She replied: "Who will pass this way now? The caravan of the pilgrims has already passed and the road is deserted".
AbuZar recalled the words which the prophet had uttered about him. He said to his wife: "Go and see carefully. If you find someone coming you will be relieved of your worry. And if you don't find anyone you should cover my dead body and place it by the side of the road.
As and when you chance to meet the first rider tell him:"AbuZar the companion of the prophet has died. Now assist in bathing and shrouding him".
AbuZar's wife ascended the mound time and again but could not find any human being. After some time, however, she saw some riders at a distance and beckoned them by moving her cloth. They came up to her and said:
"O bondwoman of God! What is the matter?" She replied: "Here is a Muslim who is dying;please arrange for his bathing, shrouding and burial. God will recompense you fo this". They asked: "Who is the man?" She replied:
"His name is AbuZar Ghifari".
The men could not believe that such a distinguished companion of the prophet could die in the desert. They, therefore, asked her: "Who is this AbuZar? Is he the companion of the prophet?" She said "Yes". They said:"May our parents be his ransom! God has granted us a great honour". They then hurried to the place where AbuZar was lying. AbuZar was feeling the pangs of death.
He fixed his eyes on their faces for some time trying to recognise their faces, and then said: "By God I have not told a lie. By God if I had sufficient cloth for my and my wife's shroud I would certainly have been shrouded in that cloth. I ask you in the name of God that if anyone of you has been a ruler or a government employee or a messenger or a chief at any time he should not shroud me".
Those present were bewildered to hear these words because almost all of them had held these offices at one time or another. Suddenly a young man from amongst the Ansar stepped forward and said: "O uncle! I shall shroud you with this mantle which I had purchased with the money that I had earned through hard work. I will shroud you with this cloth whose thread was spun by my mother so that I might use it as Ehram (pilgrims garb)".
He said to the young man: "Shroud me with these pieces of cloth, for they are pure". Now he was happy and satisfied. Then he cast a glance at them again and passed away peacefully. Then the dark and thick clouds covered the sky. Strong and severe winds began to blow and the desert sand sprang up and darkened the atmosphere. It might be said that the desert of Rabazah got converted into a roaring ocean.
(Excerpt from The Voice of Human Justice)

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The Two Valuable Dirhams

One of the companions of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.), by the name of Sa'd, was very poor and was regarded as one of the People of the Ledge[76].  He used to offer all his prayers behind the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.), who was greatly distressed by Sa’d’s poverty. One day, the Holy Prophet promised him that if he got some money, he would give it to Sa’d. Time passed but no money came to the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him and his holy progeny) who became even more distressed at Sa’d’s situation. It was at this time that Jibraeel descended from the skies, bringing with him two dirhams.
He said to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.), “Allah has said: We are aware of your distress in connection with Sa’d’s poverty.  If you want him to emerge from this state, give him these two dirhams and ask him to engage himself in trade.”
The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) took the two dirhams and set out of the house for the Dhuhr prayers when he found Sa’d waiting for him near one of the rooms of the mosque.
Turning to him, the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) asked:
“Can you engage yourself in business?”
“By Allah!  I have no capital with which I can do business,” replied Sa’d.
The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) handed him the two dirhams and told him to start trading with this capital.
Sa’d took the money and after offering the Dhuhr and A’sr prayers set about to earn his livelihood.
God blessed him in such a way that whatever he purchased for a dirham, he would sell it for double the amount. Consequently, his financial state gradually improved.  This continued till he eventually purchased a shop near the mosque and began conducting his business from there.
As his business picked up, he began to become lax with respect to his acts of worship, even to the extent that when Bilal recited the adhaan he would not get ready for the prayers. Previously, he was ready well before adhaan was recited!
When the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) noticed Sa’d’s lateness for prayers, he said to him:
“Sa'd, this world has made you so busy that it has even weaned you away from your prayers.”
Sa’d replied, “What can I do?  If I leave my wealth unattended, it will go to waste and I will end up in loss.  From one person, I have to collect the money for the goods sold, while from another I have to take possession of the goods purchased.”
The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) was disturbed at Sa'd’s involvement with his wealth and his negligence with respect to his acts of worship.  At that moment, Jibraeel descended and said:
“Allah has said: ‘We possess knowledge of your distress.  Which of the two states do you prefer for Sa'd?”
The Holy Prophet indicated that the previous state was beneficial for Sa’d.
Jibraeel agreed, “Yes, love for the world causes man to become heedless of the hereafter.  Take back the two dirhams, which you had given to him previously.”
The Holy Prophet (peace be upon him and his holy progeny) approached Sa'd and asked him if he could return the two dirhams that he had given to him.
“If you desire, I shall even give you two hundred dirhams,” said Sa’d.
“No, just give me the two dirhams, which you had taken from me.”
Sa’d handed the money to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) and within a short time, his financial situation turned a full circle and before long he found himself in his previous state.