Sayyiduna Waa-il bin Hujr (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was one of the chiefs of Hadhramaut in Yemen and his father was a king of that area as well. When he came to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) welcomed him, honoured him and made du‘aa of barakah (blessings) for him, his children and grandchildren.

When he was returning to Hadhramaut, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) sent Sayyiduna Mu‘aawiyah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) with him to demarcate a piece of land for him. Sayyiduna Waa-il (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was riding his camel while Sayyiduna Mu‘aawiyah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was walking.

When Sayyiduna Mu‘aawiyah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) complained to him of the heat of the ground (burning his feet), Sayyiduna Waa-il (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) said to him, “Walk in the shade of my camel.” Sayyiduna Mu‘aawiyah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) responded, “How will that help me? Why don’t you allow me to ride behind you (on your camel)?” (Having newly accepted Islam and therefore not having yet learnt the correct akhlaaq and etiquette, and furthermore coming from a royal background,) Sayyiduna Waa-il (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) answered, “Keep quiet, you are not worthy of riding behind kings.”

Many years later, when Sayyiduna Mu‘aawiyah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was the ruler of the Muslims, Sayyiduna Waa-il (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) came to visit him. Sayyiduna Mu‘aawiyah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) recognized him (but did not take revenge despite being in power. Rather, he) welcomed him and showered him with gifts.

(Al-Istee‘aab vol. 4, pg. 123)


1. One of the teachings of Islam is that we should treat people according to their position and rank. Hence, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) honoured Sayyiduna Waa-il (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) and showed him extra consideration.

2. Generally, if a person is ill-treated by someone, he will hold the grudge in his heart for years to come and look for an opportunity to get back at that person. However, holding grudges and harbouring ill-feelings hurt him even more and rob him of his own happiness, without affecting the other person in the least. Sayyiduna Mu‘aawiyah (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) possessed such a clean and generous heart that not only did he forgive Sayyiduna Waa-il (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), but even showered him with gifts. This is the quality of a great person, since big people have big hearts.

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