zuhd

Soft Poison

It is reported that ‘Alī b. Abī Tālib wrote to Salmām Al-Farsī – Allāh be pleased with them both – saying:

The likeness of this worldly life (dunyā) is that of a snake: soft to the touch, it will kill you with its poison. So turn away from what impresses you of it, since what stays with you is so little. And do not be concerned about it, since you are certain about its parting. And be most happy in it when you are most heedful of it; for every time its companion takes solace in one of its delights, it gives way to one of its woes.
Was-Salām.

Ibn Abī Al-Dunyā, Kitāb Al-Zuhd article 164.

The Provision of a Traveler [this world to the next]

Anas reports that when Salmān [Al-Fārsī] – Allāh be pleased with him – was ill, Sa’d visited him and found him crying, so he asked him:

O my brother, what makes you cry? Did you not accompany the Messenger of Allāh ﷺ ? Did you not do such-and-such [good deeds]? He replied, “I am not crying over any one of two things: I am not crying out of love and yearning for this world nor out of dislike for the hereafter, but I am crying because Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ took a covenant from me about something I think I have only transgressed. He made me promise that it is enough for anyone only to have enough [of this world] as would suffice as the provisions of a traveler, but I think I have only gone too far. As for you o Sa’d, fear Allāh when you judge, and when you distribute anything and when you think about doing anything.”

Thābit (one of the reporters) said, “And it reached me that [when he died] he left only about twenty dirham of spending he had.”

Ibn Mājah, Al-Sunan. Shaykh Al-Albānī graded this narration ṣaḥīḥ. See ṣaḥīḥ wa Ḍaʿīf Sunan Ibn Mājah no. 4104.

The Expenses Claims of Umar

Al-Aḥnaf b. Qays reports that ʿUmar b. Al-Khattāb – Allāh be pleased with him – said:

Nothing is permitted for ʿUmar from the wealth of Allāh except two garments: one for winter and one for summer [heat], and what I need to carry me to Hajj and ‘Umrah. And the provisions for my family are that of an [average] man of the Quraysh: neither the richest nor the poorest amongst them. After that, I am just a man from amongst the Muslims.

Abū Bakr Al-Daynūrī, Al-Mujālasah wa Jawāhir Al-‘Ilm 6:78.

Eating to Fast [not Fasting to Eat]

It is reported that once, some good food was served to Anas [Ibn Mālik] – Allāh be pleased with him, and [the person who served the food] was well off enough to afford good food. As he was eating, he kept a morsel of the food in his mouth for a while, then looked at the people and began to cry. Then he said, “By Allāh, I have accompanied people who, if they could get hold of this kind of food, would have fasted even more often, and spent less time not fasting. One of them would find only milk mixed with water [as food], which he would drink and then fast on.”

Al-Mu’āfā b. ‘Imrān, Kitāb Al-Zuhd article 215.

The Disease of this Ummah and its Doctor

It is reported that Sufyān Al-Thawrī – Allāh have mercy on him – said, “Wealth is the disease of this Ummah, and the scholar is the doctor of this Ummah. So if the doctor brings the disease to himself, how will he cure the people?”

Al-Dhahabī, Siyar A’lām Al-Nubalā`, Vol. 7 p243.