Friday, June 19, 2009

The Pearl Necklace – I: ‘I cannot accept your reward’

Qazi Abu Bakr Muhammad Bin Abdul Baqi Ansari is an illustrious personality of Islamic history. He was one of the most pious persons of his time. His biographers tell a number of stories about his honesty and reliability but the one that affected his whole life is full of strange and unique events. He has narrated this story in his own words and it adorns the pages of history books:

IN the middle of the 5th century Hijrah, I was a student of the Qur’an and Hadith in Makkah. I once became jobless and my means of income came to an end. I managed to subsist for a few days but soon it became hard to obtain even two square meals. My studies were discontinued and I had to sell a few of my books to support myself. I was at the edge of starvation but self-respect did not allow me to borrow or beg.

One day, hungry as usual, I went to the Ka’ba to pray to Allah to save me from my sad plight. On my way back I saw a velvet cloth pouch lying near the road edge. I picked it up and looked around to find its owner but the road was deserted and nobody was in sight. I carried the pouch to my house.

I was curious to know its contents. As I untied the silk cord, a very precious necklace of pearls slipped into my hand. The luster of the spotless pearls almost lit my room. It was a radiant beauty and I was thrilled to hold the valuable ornament. My thoughts went to the unfortunate owner who had lost the precious jewelry. He must be sad and very worried. The course of action which I instantly decided on was to look for the owner and give him back his necklace to relieve him of this mental suffering. Leaving the bag behind, I went straight to the place were it was found. For more read here.

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