Stoop to conquer – A King steps into the shoes of a beggar
O! Our Lord, Forgive us our sins and anything We may have done that transgressed our duty. Establish our feet firmly, and help us against those that resist Faith.” 003:147
O men! Certainly the promise of Allah is true. Let not then this present life deceive you, nor let the Chief Deceiver deceive you about Allah. 035:005
Verily Satan is an enemy to you: so treat him as an enemy. He only invites his adherents that they may become Companions of the Blazing Fire. 035:006
For those who reject Allah, is a terrible Penalty: but for those who believe and work righteous deeds, is Forgiveness, and a magnificent Reward. 035:007
This story will (Insha Allah) by Allah’s (swt) Will and His Grace help us to get rid of the evil roots from our hearts. The evil roots are pride and arrogance.
This is the story of a King by the name Abdul Tasreef and a beggar named Abdim Salam. King Abdul Tasreef was a very God fearing, respectful and a humble person, his kingdom meant nothing to him, it was more of a burden to him. He was more interested in Allah’s (swt) kingdom and he was very much afraid that he might not be able to be part of it, since he was a King in this world. He was very unhappy and distressed, over his fear for Allah (swt) and His punishment in the hereafter.
King Tasreef raised his hands in supplication to Allah (swt): “O My Lord! Let my entry be by the Gate of Truth and Honour and likewise let my exit be by the Gate of Truth and Honour, and grant me from Thy Presence an authority to aid (me).” 017:080. (To conquer those without faith and those with little faith and lead me to the people who are unjust). A few days later he decided to visit another country. When he arrived at his destination, he observed the people there were very disrespectful and had no regard for themselves or anyone else. All along the streets they were very insultive and fighting amongst themselves, and they were very unjust to beggars. Seeing all the injustice and ignorance brought sadness to his heart, it grieved him very much and his mind reflected on his prayer he made prior to his visit. He then knew for sure that he was there by the will of Allah (swt) for a purpose, which was to try to change these people’s behaviour. He didn’t know where to begin so he raised his hand in supplication to Allah (swt) once again, (he prayed): O! Allah (swt) before I left my country to come here, I had no doubt in my mind that You lead me here through my prayer which I asked of You, to lead me to the people who are unjust, so that I can reform them with your help, but now I am here and I don’t know where to begin, so please grant me Thy help and make me successful in my task of changing the life style of the people here.” While he was making this supplication, the picture of an old house was coming to his mind, and he remembered passing that particular house on his first day of visiting the village, so he made his way back there. He started to make some inquires about the house. He was told the house belonged to a pious old man named Abdim Salam who was a beggar. While begging in the streets, he would also lecture to the people about Allah (swt) and His Blessings and the doing of good deeds. The old man also told the people that one day a king would come to them in the form of a beggar and he with Allah’s (swt) help would be successful in winning over their hearts and also get them to change their obnoxious behaviour, for this is my prayer and Allah (swt) always answer the prayers of his sincere servants.
The people used to laugh and mock at Abdim Salam, calling him a mad man, for there was no way a king would transform into a beggar, it would be a miracle to see that. They didn’t believe in his God and His miracles, so they told him to keep on dreaming and praying to your God. One day Abdim Salam said to the people that he would be leaving to go away for a while, and that maybe when he comes back, he may be a king. The people laughed, spit and taunted him even worse, saying that they had enough of him and his fantasy, and they were getting annoyed with his stupid talk, so they told him to go away and not to ever come back, and then in a mocking tone they told the old man, “If you do come back make sure you are a king, or bring a king with you, and then maybe we will believe in your God and His miracles, and maybe we will work with you to help other people to believe in your God.” The old man asked the people, “Why would you change your lifestyle if my prayers are answered?” They said, “It would be fantastic to see a king stoop so low, or better yet to see you become a king, because all your life you have been nothing more than a poor, absurd, and foolish old man”. King Tasreef asked what happened to the old man, he was told that he just disappeared. After hearing all about Abdim Salam, King Tasreef went back to where he was staying. A few days later he decided to dress up as an old man and made his way over to Abdim Salam home. As he was about to open the door, he heard a voice shouted at him, “Hey Abdim Salam, do you remember me? I am your neighbour Jamal, where have you been all this time? You look young and healthy”. King Tasreef replied, “My relatives took really good care of me, they didn’t want me to return to this old house but only Allah (swt) knows why I came back”. Jamal said, “It’s good to see you,” and he went on his way. King Tasreef entered the house, looking around he saw an envelope and when he opened it, he was in great shock, he couldn’t believe his eyes, there was a picture of Abdim Salam (his name was on the picture). He looked exactly like him only a bit older. Also there was a note in the envelope which was even a bigger surprise; the note contained the prayer which he made before he left his kingdom. Tears started to roll down his eyes and he said, “O! Allah (swt) you are indeed Most Merciful to those who show mercy, Abdim Salam was indeed one of your faithful servants, please grant me the wisdom, faith, patient and courage to fulfill the humble wishes and desires of Abdim Salam.” He then decided its time for him to do his part, so he stayed at the house and pretended to be Abdim Salam. The next day he dressed up as Abdim Salam and went out into the streets to beg, when the people saw him they started to laugh at him and said, “O! Abdim Salam what did you brought back for us? How come you are still begging? Your God didn’t make you wealthy? Where is the king?”
Abdul Tasreef never said a word to them; he just went peacefully back in the house. The next day he went out into the streets again, the people threw stones at him and ran him off the streets, wounded from the stones he went back to the house. That night he prayed for Allah’s (swt) help to make him successful in this noble task. He cried and pleaded to Allah (swt) for hours for his prayers to be answered. The third day when he went out again to the streets to beg, the people started to stone him again, he pleaded with them to give him a hearing and listen to what he had to say. The people stop throwing stones at him, and listen to him this time. He then said to people, I want you all to believe what I am about to say to you, I am not Abdim Salam, I am King Abdul Tasreef and through the prayers of Abdim Salam, Allah (swt) send me here to help you people to change your evil and ignorant behaviours. The people started to laugh and said, “You old fool now you are pretending to be a king, how stupid you think we are, do you expect us to believe a king would stoop so low. We are just ordinary people and we would never stoop so low, so go back in your old house before we kill you.” King Abdul Tasreef said, I can prove to you that I am a king. The people became aggravated and said okay, lets see how and they began to stone him saying, “Is this how?” We would kill you here today for we had enough of you. As they continued to stone him, some of King Tasreef soldiers who were out looking for him (since he never return to his palace), were passing by and they saw the big commotion and decided to check it out, as they approached closer to their surprise, it was their king the people was stoning, he did look different but they recognize him by his ring, and they immediately command the people to stop throwing stones. The soldiers proclaimed this is King Abdul Tasreef who is visiting your country; he probably hit his head somehow and has lost his memory. (They assume this is what happened). At this point King Abdul Tasreef smiled at the people and said, Allaho Akbar (Allah swt is the Greatest) I have not lost my memory; I am indeed your king and Allah’s (swt) servant. The people were shocked and they started to bow in shame to him, he told them to bow down their heads in repentance to Allah (swt) Almighty and not to him. So they all did and they also fulfilled their promise they had made to Abdim Salam, to believe in Allah (swt), His Apostles and His Angels.
Some lessons we should note from this story:
- A king took the status of a beggar to change the lifestyle of other people.
- He threw away all his pride and decided to trade his worldly kingdom for the kingdom of the hereafter.
- The brilliant miracle of the connection between the king and the beggar prayers.
- The virtues that cause this great success were humbleness, cleanliness and purity of hearts, which led to spiritual goodness and glorious spiritual fellowship.
This miraculous and brilliant production that was done to establish many links to the righteous chain of the Prophets (referring to the people who changed their lives around to good and righteousness) should help us (those who have pride) to get raid of pride and proud ness from our hearts. Pride is the root of evil (devil), evil lead to blindness and darkness, blindness and darkness leads to confusion and corruption, and these actions will link us up to an evil chain, which is the Shaitan (devil) chain. So let’s keep our hearts clean and pure with the remembrance of Allah (swt), and anytime pride and proud feelings comes to our mind we must immediately recite this little prayer:
Rabbi aAAoothu bika min hamazati alshshayateeni,
WaaAAoothu bika rabbi an yahdurooni
O! Allah (swt), I seek refuge with Thee from the suggestions of the evil ones, And I seek refuge with Thee O! My Lord lest they (the people with evil intention) should come near me. 023:97 & 98
This prayer should be recited seven times in the morning and at night everyday, of one’s life, Insha Allah the devil and his suggestion will keep far away.