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Inspirational Advice

A Heart of Gold

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Monday, 25 April 2016 11:51

The Sahaabi of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), Qays bin Sa’d bin ‘Ubaadah (radhiyallahu ‘anhuma), once fell ill. While recovering from the illness, he realized that none of his friends had come to visit him. On enquiry, he learned that they were reluctant to visit him due to the fact that they all owed him money (and were thus embarrassed or afraid that he would ask them to repay the loan).

When he heard this, Qays bin Sa‘d (radhiyallahu ‘anhuma) spontaneously said, “May Allah Ta‘ala disgrace the wealth that deters my brothers from visiting me!” He thereafter instructed a person to go out and announce that he had absolved all his debtors of the amounts they owed him.  

After the announcement was made, so many visitors arrived to visit him that by nightfall, his doorstep had collapsed due the weight of the people climbing to his door! (Siraajul Mulook pg. 155)

Lessons:

1. A Muslim should not allow money to spoil his relationship with his family or fellow Muslims (as is sometimes the case in winding up estates, dissolving business partnerships, etc). Money can always be recovered. A heart which is broken by an insensitive, hurtful remark or callous behavior, however, seldom recovers completely.

2. The money owed to him was something of value. However, the value of the sunnah and the value of taking the du‘aas of people when they come to visit the sick person was far, far greater. He thus happily sacrificed something of much lesser value for that value which cannot be quantified and estimated.

3. The money owed to him was a small, short term investment. By forgiving it he transferred it “off-shore” into a permanent investment that earns several thousand percent more returns.

4. While he sacrificed money, he “bought” immense and untold barakah. Barakah is not always perceived with the eye. It comes in innumerable ways and is the essence of all good in this world.

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True Love

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Monday, 11 April 2016 15:56

(Sultaan Mahmood Ghaznawi – Part Five)

Sultaan Mahmood had an advisor by the name of Iyaaz who was extremely dear and beloved to him. Sultaan Mahmood valued his company so much that he would keep Iyaaz at his side at all times.

One day, one of the people in the court of Sultaan Mahmood out of jealousy began to criticize Iyaaz saying, “There is nothing special or excellent about Iyaaz so why is the King so fond of him?” This man’s remark reached the ears of Sultaan Mahmood who was upset over the fact that this person had spoken against his faithful advisor. However, Sultaan Mahmood maintained his composure and did not immediately react. Instead, he resolved to wait for the opportune moment to correct the person and show him the excellence of Iyaaz.

The moment arrived not long after when Sultaan Mahmood was travelling with his retinue. As they were proceeding, a camel laden with invaluable goods slipped and fell, causing all the goods to fall to the ground and scatter. Sultaan Mahmood immediately called out to the men, “Whatever you take of the fallen goods will belong to you.” Saying this, Sultaan Mahmood continued ahead, leaving all his men engaged in grabbing the goods lying about behind him.

While all the men were busy behind him, it was Iyaaz alone who had not paused to take anything. He had, as always, instead chosen to remain at the side of the king. Sultaan Mahmood asked him, “O Iyaaz! Did you also take something for yourself?” Iyaaz calmly replied, “I did not take anything and why should I? After all, I have been blessed with your company and there is no wealth which can ever tempt me to leave you.”

Sultaan Mahmood was overjoyed to hear this response. He turned to those who were jealous of Iyaaz and said, “This is the excellence of Iyaaz! This is why he is so special and beloved to me.” (Jawaahir Paare vol. 2 pg. 120)

Read more: True Love

   

A Journey of Humility

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Monday, 28 March 2016 15:23

(Sultaan Mahmood Ghaznawi – Part Four)

Sultaan Mahmood once travelled to the land of Khuraasaan On arriving there, he felt a great desire to visit the renowned Shaikh, Abul Hasan Kharqaani (rahimahullah). However, because the primary purpose for which Sultaan Mahmood had traveled to Khuraasaan was some political errand, he felt it inappropriate to visit the Shaikh on the same journey as this would imply that he was only visiting the Shaikh as he already happened to be in the area. The level of respect and honour which Sultaan Mahmood would show the pious friends of Allah Ta‘ala was such that he felt it necessary to undertake a separate, special journey in order to visit the Shaikh. With this frame of mind, Sultaan Mahmood left Khuraasaan and returned to India where he continued his jihaad and conquests and thereafter returned to Ghazni. Only after reaching Ghazni did Sultaan Mahmood make arrangements and set out on his special journey to visit Shaikh Abul Hasan Kharqaani (rahimahullah).

When he entered Kharqaan, Sultaan Mahmood decided to test the Shaikh in order to see whether he really was as great as people said he was. He therefore sent a messenger to Shaikh Abul Hasan (rahimahullah) with the following message: “The king has travelled all the way from Ghazni to visit you. Kindly leave your abode and come to receive the king.” Sultaan Mahmood also instructed the messenger saying, “If he refuses to come to meet me, recite the following verse of the Quraan Majeed to him: “O you who believe! Obey Allah, and obey the messenger, and those charged with authority among you.”

The messenger accordingly went to the Shaikh and told him that Sultaan Mahmood had come all the way from Ghazni to meet him and had requested that the Shaikh come out to receive him. The Shaikh refused to come out and told the messenger to explain to the King that he could not come to receive him. The messenger, following the instructions of Sultaan Mahmood, therefore recited the above verse of the Quraan Majeed. When the Shaikh heard the verse, he said, “Tell the King that I am so involved in trying to obey Allah Ta‘ala that, regretfully, I have been unable to obey the Rasul (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) as he ought to be obeyed. When I am still failing to adequately obey the Rasul of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), how can I turn my attention to obeying the ruler whose importance is less?”

Read more: A Journey of Humility

   

Thirst for Justice

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Monday, 14 March 2016 16:05

(Sultaan Mahmood Ghaznawi – Part Three)

There was once a person who would frequently try to gain access to the court of Sultaan Mahmood, hoping to receive justice. One day this person somehow managed to enter and even managed to attract the attention of Sultaan Mahmood. When Sultaan Mahmood noticed him, he asked him what it was he had come for. The person replied, “My complaint is such that I cannot present it to you before the entire court.” Sultaan Mahmood understood that the person needed privacy and thus took him to a secluded place where he asked the man what the matter was.

The man said, “For quite some time, your nephew has been arriving at my home fully armed. When he arrives, he lashes me with a whip and forces me out of my own home. He thereafter spends the night with my wife. I have approached and complained to numerous governors and officials but found them all unsympathetic. Let alone helping me, they did not even have the courage to refer my complaint to you. When I eventually lost all hope in the governors and officials assisting me, I began to frequent your court with the hope that I would receive an opportunity to lay my complaint before you. It so happened that you noticed me today and I have thus been able to present my problem to you. Allah Ta‘ala has made you the ruler of this kingdom. Looking after your subjects and citizens is therefore an obligation which is fardh upon you. If you are sympathetic and grant me justice, then well and good. If not, I will take my complaint to the court of Allah Ta‘ala and await His justice.” 

Sultaan Mahmood was extremely affected by this man’s words and began to weep. He turned to the man and asked, “O oppressed one! Why did you not come to me earlier? Why did you tolerate this oppression for so long?”

The person replied, “O King! I have been trying to gain an audience with you for a long time but remained unsuccessful on account of your doorkeepers and guards. Allah Ta‘ala alone knows how I somehow managed to get into your court and attract your attention today, as poor people such as myself are never normally given the chance to speak directly to the king.”

Read more: Thirst for Justice

   

Identifying with Idols

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Monday, 29 February 2016 16:24

(Sultaan Mahmood Ghaznawi – Part Two)

In the era of Sultaan Mahmood, Sawmnaat was the name of a large city and also the name of an idol which was housed within its temple. Sawmnaat, the idol, was so revered by the disbelievers of India that it had a Ka’bah-like status in their eyes. On the occasions of a solar or lunar eclipse, up to 230 000 people would travel to Sawmnaat from distant lands in order to seek its “blessing” and beg favors of it. The disbelieving king of India would personally see to the upkeep of Sawmnaat and had dedicated the income of approximately 2000 towns to its upkeep. 2000 priests would remain in the temple at all times to worship Sawmnaat and would wash him with water of the Ganges River every night (the water would be brought from the river which was just less than 2000km away). The priests had hung a chain of solid gold which weighed approximately 170kg from one end of the temple to the next. Scattered across the length of this chain were small bells which would be rung to indicate that it was time to worship Sawmnaat. 500 singing women and 300 men would remain in the temple to serve Sawmnaat and an additional 300 barbers were kept available to shave the heads and faces of the priests. The king had even dedicated his daughters to the service of Sawmnaat. They lived lives of celibacy in the temple and passed their days serving the idol.

Read more: Identifying with Idols

   

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