A slave-woman from the Banû Isrâ’îl

Bahishti Zewar, Fiqh, Part 7 - Lives of Pious Women and Characteristics of Women, Women & Family / Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011

It is mentioned in a Hadîth that a woman from the Banû Isrâ’îl was breast-feeding her child when a richly adorned caravan passed by. This woman made a du‘â: “O Allah! Make my child (rich) just like this.” Upon hearing this, the child left her breast and said: “O Allah! Do not make me like this.” Thereafter the child continued drinking her milk. After a little while a group of people passed by taking a slave-woman with them in a disgraceful and oppressive manner. Upon seeing this spectacle, the mother made the following du‘â: “O Allah! Do not make my child like this.” Again the child left her breast and said: “O Allah! Make me just like this.” The mother asked: “What is this you are saying?” He replied: “The person who was at the head of the caravan was a tyrant. The slave-woman was being accused of being a thief and being immoral when in fact she is pure from all these accusations.”

Lesson: The meaning of this is that people value the person at the head of the caravan while in Allah’s sight he has no value. This slave-woman has no value in the eyes of the people while in Allah’s sight she has great value. One should therefore try to acquire the value of Allah irrespective of what people may think. If a person is of no value in Allah’s sight, what benefit is there in acquiring the value and respect of the people? Look! It was the miracle of that slave-woman that a breast-fed child began speaking in order to attest to her purity and chastity. O women! It is the habit of some women to despise and look down upon poor people. On the slightest doubt, they take out faults with them and accuse them of stealing. This is an evil practice. It is possible that such poor people are better than you in the sight of Allah.

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