The Repentance of Al Habeeb Abu Muhammad – Mustafa George [Inspirational !!]

Indeed the Shaytaan has succeeded in leading many people astray from the straight path of Allah. He promised this, as we were informed by our Lord – The Most High – when He said:

“(Iblîs) said: “Because You have sent me astray, surely, I will lie in wait against them (human beings) on Your straight path. “Then I will come to them from before them and behind them, from their right and from their left, and You will not find most of them as thankful ones (i.e. they will not be dutiful to You).”
[ The Noble Qur’aan, سورة الأعراف Soorah al-A’raaf  007, Verses 016 – 017]

From the countless tricks of the shaytaan and his constant deception of the children of Adam (may the blessings of Allah be upon him) is that he seeks to divert the servant away from performing sincere repentance. He is keen to accomplish this through several means and sinister strategies. Amongst his strategies is persuading an individual to blame others for difficulties and calamities that occur as a result of one’s own sins. Due to this Allah – The Most High – has informed His servants that that which occurs in one’s life of calamity is a direct or indirect result of what a person has put forward by way of his own hands. Allah – The Most High – said:

That which befalls you of calamity is due to what your hands have put forward, and Allah pardons much. (Surah al Shura:30)

Sheikh ‘Abdul Rahmaan al Sa’di commented on the above verse:

Allah informs in this verse that a person is not afflicted with a trial in his body, wealth, children, or in anything that he loves and is dear to him, except that this occurs due to that which he has put forward of sins from his own hands. (Tayseer Kareem al Rahmaan pg.899)

The Salaf of the past realized this evil plot of the shaytaan and as a result, they did not seek to blame others if calamities took place, especially those which occurred as a result of one’s sins.

If one were to read the speech of the Salaf, one would find them to be undoubtedly well versed and exceptionally intelligent as it pertains to sins and repentance. The likes of their true understanding of the ill effects of sins and what follows them of trials and calamity can be witnessed in the statement of Fudayl bin ‘Eyaan, he said:

Indeed I disobey Allah and as a consequence, I witness the evil result in the character of my donkey and my servant. (Hilyat al Awliyah 8/109, Al Daa wa Dawaa pg.134)

Another example which shows how the Salaf viewed this matter is illustrated in the story of the repentance of Habeeb Abu Muhammad.

It is mentioned that he was a wealthy merchant who used to lend money to those in need, but with a stipulation that the debtor repays the loan along with interest. One day while Habeeb was leaving his home he passed by a group of young boys who upon seeing him began to chant:

Here comes the man who deals in interest!

Upon hearing this, Habeeb lowered his head in humiliation and said:

Oh Allah! You have exposed my affair even to these young boys!

Habeed then returned home, gathered his wealth and said:

Oh my Lord! I am a slave, and I seek to purchase myself with this wealth, so please free me.

In the morning Habeeb donated all of his wealth in charity and thereafter he began to diligently busy himself with the worship Allah.

It is mentioned that from that time on, if anyone saw Habeeb, he would either be fasting, or indulged in prayer and remembrance of Allah.

It took place that after some time Habeeb passed by a group of youth who upon seeing him mentioned:

Lower your voices. Here comes Habeeb, the devoted worshiper!

Upon hearing this Habeeb said:

Oh Allah! At times You admonish, and other times You praise. Indeed this is all from You.

The people of his time mentioned that Habeeb became in individual whose supplication was always accepted. (Tahtheeb al Kalaam 5/390)

Many lessons and points of reflection can be derived from this story. From amongst them:

1. When Habeeb realized that his affair became well known to the public, he immediately turned to Allah in repentance and sought His forgiveness.

2. He did not become angry because of the information being spread, but rather he straight away concluded that his own sins were the cause of the public becoming aware of his faults.

3. Without delay Habeeb removed from his presence that which he had gained of wealth by way of sin. This is an indication of his true sincerity in repentance.

4. Habeeb did not begin to inquire about who informed the youth of his sin, nor did he say that those who informed the youth had backbitten him. Instead, he grasped the most significant benefit derived from this occurrence, which is the fact that he has committed a wrong against his soul, and he is in need of Allah’s forgiveness.

In the actions of Habeeb are important lessons for the believers and we should all try to gain from this tremendous story.

A present day example of this is, if a Muslim female, for example, were to listen to music from time to time on the internet. One day while her husband is sitting with their children one of them says: Abee, do you know that Ummi listens to music on the computer? If the husband confronts and admonishes his wife, she should not become upset and angry with her children. Instead, she should recognize that possibly this means that her Lord wants well for her! How? It’s possible that if her husband never became aware of this sin, she would continue performing it thereby causing greater harm to her soul. But once her fault became known to her husband and she was admonished for it, at this point, if she stops the sin, turns to Allah and seeks His forgiveness, this trial in reality has become a blessing!

The statement of Fudayl and the story of Habeeb clearly illustrate how the Salaf understood the great affair of repentance, and how they attributed what befell them of trials and tribulations to themselves and not to others. Indeed when an individual comes to such a realization, he will begin to sincerely return to Allah and seek His forgiveness.

Another matter which is worthy of mentioning is that if a servant finds himself constantly committing wrong, but his Lord does not cause difficulties and misfortunes to occur in his life, but instead Allah continues to bless him, this is considered Istidraaj (leading to one’s destruction). This fact was mentioned by our beloved Prophet Muhammad (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), he said:

If you notice that Allah continues to bless an individual with that which he loves of this world, while that person persists to indulge in sin, know that this is leading to his destruction. (Musnad Imam Ahmed and declared authentic in Silsilah al Saheehah 1/700)

The above narration clearly indicates that when Allah wants good for a person who has wronged himself, He will put in that person’s path a calamity that will affect him to such a degree that he sincerely returns to his Lord in a state of humiliation seeking His forgiveness and begging for His pardon. This information proves that tribulations in the life of the Muslim can in fact turn into enormously needed means of purification. But this only takes place if the servant notices this reality and uses the calamity to his benefit from the very beginning. In light of this, the Prophet of Mercy said:

Indeed patience is to be displayed at the beginning of the difficulty. (Sahih al Bukhari:1283, Sahih Muslim:2178)

With clarification of this important issue, it becomes evident how cleverly the shaytaan has allowed tremendous reward and forgiveness to escape the hands of those who are neglectful and careless at times of major tests in their lives!

May Allah correct our affairs and grant us Tawfeeq to understand all matters of our wonderful religion so that we may be saved from the endless plots of the shaytan.

Mustafa George DeBerry
Riyadh, K.S.A
August 24, 2010

Advice: How to Set Your State Aright – Imam Ibn al Qayyim

Let’s strive to be close to Allah.

Let’s long for the dwelling of peace wherein there is no toil, stress or weariness.

The easiest way is to consider the fact that you are passing a period that lies between two other periods, namely your current life, which is the present one and it is between your past and your future.

The past can be set aright through repentance, regret and asking the forgiveness of Allah, and this is a way, which affords you no toil, weariness or hard work, as it is concerned with the heart.

The future can be set aright by abstaining from misdeeds, and this is a means of comfort and relief for you, for it is not a difficult act, but it is an intention that relieves your body, heart, and your mind.

In brief, your past is set aright through repentance; your future is set aright through abstention, determination and intention, which have nothing to do with overburdening the body.

However, our concern here is with the present time as it stands between the two other periods. If you waste it, then you are wasting your happiness and salvation. On the contrary, if you maintain it through setting your past and present aright, indeed you will attain success, salvation, relief, and pleasure.

Improving your present state is much more difficult than setting your past and your future aright, because it means that you should abide by the most deserving and beneficial deeds to achieve happiness. There are great differences between people in this regard. This is your chance to take the provision for your Hereafter, either Paradise or Hellfire. So, if you take this path to your Lord, you will attain glorious happiness and great success during this short period of time which has no value compared with eternity. However, if you prefer vain desires, idleness, play and amusement, the period would pass quickly, followed by a permanent and great pain, the suffering of which is much more severe than the suffering of patience, the patience required to obey Allah.

Source: AL-FA WA’ID: A Collection of Wise Syaings – Imam Ibn al Qayyim
Al Bayaan Translation Services

One Sin led to his Repentance – Stories of Repentance

A righteous man was once asked to tell the story of the pivotal moment of his life, the moment in which he first began to apply the teachings of Islam, and the following was his answer:

When I was a young man, I would not hesitate to perpetrate any sin that was made available to me. Then, one day, I saw a young woman who was perhaps the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. Much tempted by her, I indicated to her that I wanted her to approach me. She seemed nervous, but I thought that she would probably agree to satisfy my sexual desires for money. She approached me with what seemed to be a great deal of trepidation, and when she actually stood before me, she looked extremely terrified.

Feeling sorry for her, I said, ‘Do not fear, for I will not harm you.’

But my words did not lessen her terrible fright in the least; in fact, her situation worsened. She began to tremble like a palm tree leaf trembles with the wind.

I said, ‘Tell me your story.’

She said, ‘By Allah, o my brother, never before this day have I offered my body in this way. Dire need is what has driven me to this, for I have three daughters who have not eaten a single morsel of food for three days now. It was pity for them that brought me to this low point in my life.’

For the first time in my life, I felt pity; her story moved me, and I no longer entertained the intention of taking advantage of her. After she told me where she lived, I took a great deal of money, clothing and food to her house. When I returned to my house, I told my mother what had happened.

My mother knew that I had a book in which I would record all of my evil deeds, and so she said to me, ‘My son, you are a man who has never performed a good deed except for the good deed that you performed today. I know that you have a book in which you record your evil exploits, go now and write in it your good deed.’

I stood up, went to my book, opened it, and found that all of its pages were blank- except for the first page on which was written a single line.

إِنَّ الْحَسَنَاتِ يُذْهِبْنَ السَّيِّئَاتِ

Verily, the good deeds remove the evil deeds (i.e. small sins)

[Hud : 114]

At that very moment, I raised my hands to the sky and said, ‘By your Might and Majesty, never again will I disobey You.’ “

The above is taken from Stories of Repentance published by dar-us-salam.com

Between The Past And The Future – Imâm Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah

al-Fawaa’id, pp 151-152, Al-Istiqaamah, No. 2

Your life in the present moment is in between the past and the future.

So what has preceded can be rectified by tawbah (repentance), nadam (regret) and istighfar (seeking Allaah’s forgiveness). And this is something that will neither tire you, nor cause you to toil as you would with strenuous labour. Rather it is an action of the heart.Then as regards the future (then it can be corrected) by withholding yourself from sins. And this abandonment is merely the leaving of something and to be at ease from it. This also is not action of the limbs, which requires you to strive and toil. Rather this is a firm resolve and intention of the heart – which will give rest to your body, heart and thoughts.

So as for what has preceded, then you rectify it with repentance. And as for the future – then you rectify it with firm resolve and intention. Neither of these involves any hardship or exertion of the limbs.

But then your attention must be directed to your life in the present – the time between two times. If you waste it, then you have wasted the opportunity to be of the fortunate and saved ones. If you look after it, having rectified the two times – what is before and after it, as we have said – then you will be successful and achieve rest, delight and ever-lasting bliss. However, looking after it is harder than that which comes before and after it, since guarding it involves keeping to that which is most befitting and beneficial for your soul, and that which will bring it success and well-being.

The True Treasure : I went to steal from him, but he stole from me – Inspirational Story

A burglar scaled the wall of Maalik bin Dinar’s house one night and easily managed to get inside. Once inside the house, the thief was disappointed to see that there was nothing inside actually worth stealing. The owner of the home was inside at the time, he was busy performing prayer. Realizing that he was not alone, Maalik quickly ended his prayer and turned around to face the thief. Without showing any sign of being shocked or afraid, Maalik calmly extended greetings of peace and then said, “My brother, may Allah forgive you. You entered my home and found nothing that is worth taking, yet I do not want you to leave my home without taking away some benefit.”

He stood up, went to another part of the room, and came back with a jug full of water. He looked into the eyes of the burglar and said, “Make ablution and perform two units of prayer, for if you do so, you will leave my home with a greater treasure than you had initially sought when you entered it.”

Much humbled by Maalik’s manners and words, the thief said, “Yes, that is a generous offer indeed.”

After making ablution and performing two units of prayer, the burglar said, “O Maalik, would you mind if I stayed for a while, for I want to stay to perform two more units of prayer?”

Maalik said, “Stay for whatever amount of prayer Allah decrees for you to perform now.”

The thief ended up spending the entire night at Maalik’s house. He continued to pray until the morning. Then Maalik said, “Leave now and be good.”

But instead of leaving, the thief said, “Would you mind if I stayed here with you today, for I have made an intention to fast the day?”

“Stay as long as you wish,” said Maalik.

The burglar ended up staying for a number of days, praying during the late hours of each night and fasting throughout the duration of each day. When he finally decided to leave, the burglar said, “O Maalik, I have made a firm resolve to repent for my sins and for my former way of life.”

Maalik said, “Indeed, that is in the Hand of Allah.”

The man did mend his ways and began to lead a life of righteousness and obedience to Allah. Later on, He came across another burglar he knew. [His friend] said to him, “Have you found your treasure yet?”

He said, “My brother, what I found is Maalik bin Dinaar. I went to steal from him, but it was he who ended up stealing my heart. I have indeed repented to Allah, and I will remain at the door [of His Mercy and Forgiveness] until I achieve what his obedient, loving slaves have achieved.”

[al-Mawaa’idh wal-Majaalis: 85]

Source: The above is taken from the book “Stories of Repentance” from dar-us-salam publications

Woe Unto you, O Dinar !! – The Stories of Repentance

Interesting Story !! Read on ..

There is an interesting story related about Dinaar al-‘Ayaar. Dinaar had a righteous mother who would constantly advise him to repent for his wayward, sinful existence, but as much as she tried, her words had no positive effect on him whatsoever. Then, one day, as he was walking by a graveyard, he stopped to pick up a bone. He was shocked to see how it crumbled and turned to dust in his hand. The sight of that bone had a profound effect on Dinaar. He began to think about his life and his past sins, and he then exclaimed, “Woe unto you, O Dinaar, you are going to end up like this crushed bone, and your body will turn into dust.” All of his past sins then flashed before his eyes, and he made a firm resolve to repent. Turning his gaze towards the sky, he said, “My Lord, I now turn to you in complete submission, so accept me and have Mercy on me.”

With a completely changed heart and state of mind, Dinaar went to his mother and said, “Mother, what does a master do when he captures his slave who had run away from him?” She said, “[To punish him] the master provides him with coarse clothing and low-quality food; and he ties his hands and feet so that he does not make another attempt to escape.” Dinaar said, “Then I want a garment made of coarse wool, low-quality barley, and two chains. Mother, do with me that which is done with a runaway slave. Perhaps my Lord will, upon seeing my humiliation and humility, have mercy on me.” Seeing that her son was adamant and resolute in his request, she complied.

At the beginning of every ensuing night, Dinaar would begin to cry and wail uncontrollably. And he would continue to repeat to himself the words, “Woe unto you, O Dinaar, do you have the power to withstand the Hell fire? How brazen you have been to have led a life that has made you deserving of the anger of the All-Mighty!” He would continue upon that state until the morning.

Turning wan and pale, Dinaar’s body slowly wasted away. Not being able to bear seeing him in that pitiable state, his mother said, “My son, be easy on yourself.” He answered, “My mother, let me remain tied for a short while, so that perhaps I can achieve long-term comfort later on. For tomorrow, I will be waiting a long time before my Majestic Lord, and I do not know whether He will order me to go to places of beautiful shade or to places of unspeakable horror.”

She said, “My son, at least rest for a while.” He said, “It is not present rest or comfort that I am seeking out. Mother, it is as if I see you and other people being led tomorrow towards Paradise, while I am being led towards the Hell-fire along with his inhabitants.” She left him then, and he returned to crying, worshipping, and reciting the Quran. One night, as he was reciting the Quran, he came across these verses:

فَوَرَبِّكَ لَنَسْأَلَنَّهُمْ أَجْمَعِين عَمَّا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ َ
So, by your Lord [o Muhammad], We shall certainly call all of them to account, for all that they used to do.

[al-Hijr : 92-93]

As he contemplated the meanings and implications of these verses, he cried with such intensity that he fainted. His mother rushed to him and tried very hard to revive him, but he wouldn’t respond. She thought he had died. Looking into the face of her son, she said, “O my beloved one, O the joy of my heart, where shall we meet again?” In fact, Dinaar still had some life left in him, and hearing his mother’s words, he answered with a faint voice, “My mother, if you do not find me on the wide plains of the Day of Resurrection, then ask Maalik, the Custodian of Hell-fire about me.” He then made a croaking sound and died.

After she finished washing his body, Dinaar’s mother prepared him for his funeral. She then went out and made the announcement, “O people, come to the funeral prayer of one who has been killed by [fear of] the Hell-fire.” People began to come from all directions. It is said that during that era, no greater gathering came together and no amount of tears were shed as much as on that day.

On the same night that his funeral was held, one of Dinaar’s friends saw him in a dream, attired in a green robe. Dinaar was prancing around in Paradise, all the while reciting the verse:

فَوَرَبِّكَ لَنَسْأَلَنَّهُمْ أَجْمَعِين عَمَّا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ َ
So, by your Lord [o Muhammad], We shall certainly call all of them to account, for all that they used to do.

During the dream, his friend heard him say, “By His Might and Majesty, He asked me [about my deeds]. Having mercy on me, He forgave me and pardoned me [my sins.] Lo! Convey news of this to my mother.”

The above story is taken from “The Stories of repentence” published by dar-us-salam

Allah’s Vast And Comprehensive Mercy : The Stories of Repentance

Yusuf bin Al-Husain is the narrator of this story:

I was with Dhi-an-Nun on the edge of a stream, when we saw an extraordinarily large lizard crawling along the side of the stream. Something strange yet wonderful then happened. A frog surfaced from the stream, the lizard mounted its back, and the frog then swam to the other side of the stream, carrying its passenger on its back.

Dhi-an-Nun said, “There is something interesting about that lizard let us go and follow it.” We crossed the stream (which wasn’t so wide in width), and on the other side, we saw a drunken man who had passed out. Suddenly, a snake appeared before the prone body of the drunkard. It slithered its way up to the man’s navel to his chest, making a direct course to one of his ears.

The lizard we saw earlier then sprang into action. It jumped onto the snake and struck it violently, splitting its body into two. Returning to the edge of the stream, the lizard then mounted the frog again, and the two crossed to the other side of the stream, though both were still visible to us. Dhi-an-Nun woke up the drunkard, who slowly opened his eyes and became conscious of what was happening around him. Dhi-an-Nun said, “O young man, look how Allah has saved you! When this snake came to kill you, that lizard came and killed it. He then explained the entire story to the young man.

The young man stood up and exclaimed: “O my lord, this is how you deal with one who disobeys you, then what will your mercy be like for the one who obeys you?” He then betook himself to the desert, vowing to dedicate his life to worship and to never return to the evils of the city.

The above is taken from “The Stories of Repentence” published by dar-us-salam

Story of a Man who did not fulfill the rights of others – The Stories of Repentance

THERE IS HOPE UNTIL THE VERY END

One day, as Ali bin Abi Taalib and al-Hussain bin Ali were walking together, they heard a man supplicating to Allah. The man was begging Allah to forgive him for his evil crimes. His sincere tone and eloquent words aroused the interest of Ali, who turned to his son and said, “Do you not hear the man who is so very contrite because of his sins? Go catch up with him and call him.”

When al-Hussain caught up with the man, he saw that he was clean-looking, clean-smelling, with nice clothes and altogether handsome- except that he seemed to be paralyzed on the right side of his body. Al-Hussain said, “Answer the summons of the Leader of the believers, Ali bin Abu Taalib.”

Dragging his right side, the man followed al-Hussain back to where Ali was waiting for them.

“Who are you and what is your story,” asked Ali.

“My story is that of a man who did not fulfill the rights of others and is now being punished for that,” said the man.

“And what is your name?” asked Ali.

“Munaazil bin Laahiq,” said the man.

“And what is your story?” asked Ali.

“I was famous among the Arabs for my frivolous and sinful exploits. Merciful and kind, my father would constantly admonish me and advise me to mend my ways. He would remind me of Allah’s punishment, saying, ‘My son, do not go against He who punishes with the Hell-fire!’ When he would persist in advising me, I felt his voice grating on my nerves. I would get so frustrated that I would beat him with harsh blows. In response to my blows, he one day said, ‘By Allah, I will fast without breaking my fast and I will pray without stopping to sleep.’ He fasted for an entire week, but seeing no change in my behavior, he climbed a camel and set off to perform Hajj. His parting words were, ‘I am going to the House of Allah, and there I will seek help from Allah against you.’ When he reached Makkah, he embraced the curtain of the Kaa’ba and supplicated against me, asking Allah to make me paralyzed on one side of my body. By the One Who raised the sky and sends down the rain, no sooner did my father finish his supplication than I became paralyzed on my right side, which became like a piece of wood. Anyone that would then pass by me would point to me and say, ‘Allah answered his father’s supplication against him.'”

“What did your father do then?” asked Ali.

“O Leader of the Believers, after he became pleased with me, I asked him to go back and invoke Allah on my behalf. He agreed to do so. I walked alongside him as he rode on his camel, until we reached a place called the Valley of Arak. When we reached there, a group of birds flew away from a tree, their sudden movement frightened the camel. As the camel raced off in a state of fright, my father fell off it and died.”

It was certainly late for the man, but not too late, and so Ali advised him to continue to supplicate and to repent for his past misdeeds. Ali then parted from the man, but before leaving him, he taught him the supplication that a person in distress should say. [The narration does not specifically mention which supplication it was that Ali taught the man.]

The above story is taken from “The Stories of repentance” published by dar-us-salam

First go and see if all the people are asleep – Stories of Repentance

THE EVER-LIVING NEVER SLEEPS

Both of them lived in a small town that was populated by only tens or hundreds of people. He was in love with her, and so when he saw her walking alone one night, he followed her until he had her cornered. When he came near to her, he said, “Woman, I crave for you.”

She said, “First go and see if all the people are asleep.”

Very pleased at her response, he walked around the town and returned. “Everyone is asleep,” he said.

“What about Allah Azza wa Jal?” she asked. “Is He sleeping at this hour?”

“Woman, what are you saying?” he exclaimed. “Indeed, Allah does not sleep: neither slumber nor sleep overtake Him.”

“The One Who hasn’t slept and doesn’t sleep sees us, even if people don’t see us,” she said. “Do you not fear He Who neither sleeps nor is heedless of anything that happens?”

The man left her alone with tears flowing from his eyes, having nothing in mind except the desire to repent to the One Who neither sleeps nor is heedless of anything that happens.

Source: The above is taken from “Stories of Repentance” published by dar-us-salam

A Sin that Leads to Jannah – Ibn al-Qayyim

Ibn al-Qayyim (rahimahullah) said:

“Sin may be more beneficial for a person, if it leads him to repent, than doing a lot of acts of worship. This is what is meant by the words of one of the salaf:

‘A person may commit a sin and enter Paradise because of it, or he may do an act of worship and enter Hell because of it.’

They said: ‘How is that?’

He said: ‘He may commit a sin and continues to think about it, and when he stands or sits or walks he remembers his sin, so he feels ashamed and repents and seeks forgiveness and regrets it, so that will be the means of his salvation.
And he may do a good deed and continue to think about it, and when he stands or sits or walks he remembers it and it fills him with self-admiration and pride, so it is the cause of his doom.

So the sin may be the factor that leads him to do acts of worship and good deeds and to change his attitude so that he fears Allah and feels shy before Him and feels humiliated before Him, hanging his head in shame and weeping with regret, seeking he forgiveness of his Lord. Each of these effects is better for a person than an act of worship that makes him feel proud and show off and look down on people. Undoubtedly this sin is better before Allah and is more likely to bring salvation than one who admires himself and looks down on others, and who thinks that he is doing Allah a favour. Even if he says words that indicate something other than that, Allah is the Witness over what is in his heart. Such a person may feel hatred towards people if they do not hold him in high esteem and humiliate themselves before him. If he were to examine himself honestly, he would see that clearly.”

-Madarij as-Salikeen, 1/299

The Story of Ka’b Ibn Maalik (rahimahullaah) – Saheeh al Bukhaaree

Saheeh al Bukhaaree : Volume 5, Book 59, Number 702

Narrated ‘Abdullah ibn Kab bin Malik:

Who, from among Kab’s sons, was the guide of Kab when he became blind: I heard Kab bin Malik narrating the story of (the Ghazwa of) Tabuk in which he failed to take part.

Kab said, “I did not remain behind Allah’s Apostle in any Ghazwa that he fought except the Ghazwa of Tabuk, and I failed to take part in the Ghazwa of Badr, but Allah did not admonish anyone who had not participated in it, for in fact, Allah’s Apostle had gone out in search of the caravan of Quraish till Allah made them (i.e. the Muslims) and their enemy meet without any appointment. I witnessed the night of Al-‘Aqaba (pledge) with Allah’s Apostle when we pledged for Islam, and I would not exchange it for the Badr battle although the Badr battle is more popular amongst the people than it (i.e. Al-‘Aqaba pledge). As for my news (in this battle of Tabuk), I had never been stronger or wealthier than I was when I remained behind the Prophet in that Ghazwa.

By Allah, never had I two she-camels before, but I had then at the time of this Ghazwa. Whenever Allah’s Apostle wanted to make a Ghazwa, he used to hide his intention by apparently referring to different Ghazwa till it was the time of that Ghazwa (of Tabuk) which Allah’s Apostle fought in severe heat, facing, a long journey, desert, and the great number of enemy. So the Prophet announced to the Muslims clearly (their destination) so that they might get prepared for their Ghazwa. So he informed them clearly of the destination he was going to. Allah’s Apostle was accompanied by a large number of Muslims who could not be listed in a book namely, a register.” Ka’b added, “Any man who intended to be absent would think that the matter would remain hidden unless Allah revealed it through Divine Revelation.

So Allah’s Apostle fought that Ghazwa at the time when the fruits had ripened and the shade looked pleasant. Allah’s Apostle and his companions prepared for the battle and I started to go out in order to get myself ready along with them, but I returned without doing anything. I would say to myself, ‘I can do that.’ So I kept on delaying it every now and then till the people got ready and Allah’s Apostle and the Muslims along with him departed, and I had not prepared anything for my departure, and I said, I will prepare myself (for departure) one or two days after him, and then join them.’ In the morning following their departure, I went out to get myself ready but returned having done nothing. Then again in the next morning, I went out to get ready but returned without doing anything.

Such was the case with me till they hurried away and the battle was missed (by me). Even then I intended to depart to take them over. I wish I had done so! But it was not in my luck. So, after the departure of Allah’s Apostle, whenever I went out and walked amongst the people (i.e, the remaining persons), it grieved me that I could see none around me, but one accused of hypocrisy or one of those weak men whom Allah had excused.

Allah’s Apostle did not remember me till he reached Tabuk. So while he was sitting amongst the people in Tabuk, he said, ‘What did Ka’b do?’ A man from Banu Salama said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! He has been stopped by his two Burdas (i.e. garments) and his looking at his own flanks with pride.’ Then Mu’adh bin Jabal said, ‘What a bad thing you have said! By Allah! O Allahs Apostle! We know nothing about him but good.’ Allah’s Apostle kept silent.”

Kab bin Malik added, “When I heard that he (i.e. the Prophet ) was on his way back to Medina. I got dipped in my concern, and began to think of false excuses, saying to myself, ‘How can I avoid his anger tomorrow?’ And I took the advice of wise member of my family in this matter. When it was said that Allah’s Apostle, had come near all the evil false excuses abandoned from my mind and I knew well that I could never come out of this problem by forging a false statement. Then I decided firmly to speak the truth.

So Allah’s Apostle arrived in the morning, and whenever he returned from a journey., he used to visit the Mosque first of all and offer a two-Rak’at prayer therein and then sit for the people. So when he had done all that (this time), those who had failed to join the battle (of Tabuk) came and started offering (false) excuses and taking oaths before him. They were something over eighty men; Allah’s Apostle accepted the excuses they had expressed, took their pledge of allegiance asked for Allah’s Forgiveness for them, and left the secrets of their hearts for Allah to judge.

Then I came to him, and when I greeted him, he smiled a smile of an angry person and then said, ‘Come on.’ So I came walking till I sat before him. He said to me, ‘What stopped you from joining us. Had you not purchased an animal for carrying you?’ I answered, “Yes, O Allah’s Apostle! But by Allah, if I were sitting before any person from among the people of the world other than you, I would have avoided his anger with an excuse.

By Allah, I have been bestowed with the power of speaking fluently and eloquently, but by Allah, I knew well that if today I tell you a lie to seek your favour, Allah would surely make you angry with me in the near future, but if I tell you the truth, though you will get angry because of it, I hope for Allah’s Forgiveness. Really, by Allah, there was no excuse for me. By Allah, I had never been stronger or wealthier than I was when I remained behind you.’

Then Allah’s Apostle said, ‘As regards this man, he has surely told the truth. So get up till Allah decides your case.’ I got up, and many men of Banu Salama followed me and said to me. ‘By Allah, we never witnessed you doing any sin before this. Surely, you failed to offer excuse to Allah’s Apostle as the others who did not join him, have offered. The prayer of Allah’s Apostle to Allah to forgive you would have been sufficient for you.’ By Allah, they continued blaming me so much that I intended to return (to the Prophet) and accuse myself of having told a lie, but I said to them, ‘Is there anybody else who has met the same fate as I have?’ They replied, ‘Yes, there are two men who have said the same thing as you have, and to both of them was given the same order as given to you.’ I said, ‘Who are they?’ They replied, Murara bin Ar-Rabi Al-Amri and Hilal bin Umaiya Al-Waqifi.’ By that they mentioned to me two pious men who had attended the Ghazwa (Battle) of Badr, and in whom there was an example for me. So I did not change my mind when they mentioned them to me.

Allah’s Apostle forbade all the Muslims to talk to us, the three aforesaid persons out of all those who had remained behind in that Ghazwa. So we kept away from the people and they changed their attitude towards us till the very land (where I lived) appeared strange to me as if I did not know it.

We remained in that condition for fifty nights. As regards my two fellows, they remained in their houses and kept on weeping, but I was the youngest of them and the firmest of them, so I used to go out and witness the prayers along with the Muslims and roam about in the markets, but none would talk to me, and I would come to Allah’s Apostle and greet him while he was sitting In his gathering after the prayer, and I would wonder whether the Prophet did move his lips in return to my greetings or not. Then I would offer my prayer near to him and look at him stealthily. When I was busy with my prayer, he would turn his face towards me, but when I turned my face to him, he would turn his face away from me.

When this harsh attitude of the people lasted long, I walked till I scaled the wall of the garden of Abu Qatada who was my cousin and dearest person to me, and I offered my greetings to him. By Allah, he did not return my greetings. I said, ‘O Abu Qatada! I beseech you by Allah! Do you know that I love Allah and His Apostle?’ He kept quiet. I asked him again, beseeching him by Allah, but he remained silent. Then I asked him again in the Name of Allah. He said, “Allah and His Apostle know it better.’ Thereupon my eyes flowed with tears and I returned and jumped over the wall.”

Ka’b added, “While I was walking in the market of Medina, suddenly I saw a Nabati (i.e. a Christian farmer) from the Nabatis of Sham who came to sell his grains in Medina, saying, ‘Who will lead me to Kab bin Malik?’ The people began to point (me) out for him till he came to me and handed me a letter from the king of Ghassan in which the following was written:

“To proceed, I have been informed that your friend (i.e. the Prophet ) has treated you harshly. Anyhow, Allah does not let you live at a place where you feel inferior and your right is lost. So join us, and we will console you.”

When I read it, I said to myself, ‘This is also a sort of a test.’ Then I took the letter to the oven and made a fire therein by burning it.

When fourty out of the fifty nights elapsed, behold ! There came to me the messenger of Allah’s Apostle and said, ‘Allah’s Apostle orders you to keep away from your wife,’ I said, ‘Should I divorce her; or else! what should I do?’ He said, ‘No, only keep aloof from her and do not cohabit her.’ The Prophet sent the same message to my two fellows. Then I said to my wife. ‘Go to your parents and remain with them till Allah gives His Verdict in this matter.’

Kab added, “The wife of Hilal bin Umaiya came to Apostle and said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Hilal bin Umaiya is a helpless old man who has no servant to attend on him. Do you dislike that I should serve him? ‘ He said, ‘No (you can serve him) but he should not come near you.’ She said, ‘By Allah, he has no desire for anything. By, Allah, he has never ceased weeping till his case began till this day of his.’

On that, some of my family members said to me, ‘Will you also ask Allah’s Apostle to permit your wife (to serve you) as he has permitted the wife of Hilal bin Umaiya to serve him?’ I said, ‘By Allah, I will not ask the permission of Allah’s Apostle regarding her, for I do not know What Allah’s Apostle would say if I asked him to permit her (to serve me) while I am a young man.’

Then I remained in that state for ten more nights after that till the period of fifty nights was completed starting from the time when Allah’s Apostle prohibited the people from talking to us.

When I had offered the Fajr prayer on the 50th morning on the roof of one of our houses and while I was sitting in the condition which Allah described (in the Qur’an) i.e. my very soul seemed straitened to me and even the earth seemed narrow to me for all its spaciousness, there I heard the voice of one who had ascended the mountain of Sala’ calling with his loudest voice, ‘O Kab bin Malik! Be happy (by receiving good tidings).’ I fell down in prostration before Allah, realizing that relief has come. Allah’s Apostle had announced the acceptance of our repentance by Allah when he had offered the Fajr prayer. The people then went out to congratulate us. Some bringers of good tidings went out to my two fellows, and a horseman came to me in haste, and a man of Banu Aslam came running and ascended the mountain and his voice was swifter than the horse. When he (i.e. the man) whose voice I had heard, came to me conveying the good tidings, I took off my garments and dressed him with them; and by Allah, I owned no other garments than them on that day. Then I borrowed two garments and wore them and went to Allah’s Apostle.
The people started receiving me in batches, congratulating me on Allah’s Acceptance of my repentance, saying, ‘We congratulate you on Allah’s Acceptance of your repentance.” Kab further said, “When I entered the Mosque. I saw Allah’s Apostle sitting with the people around him. Talha bin Ubaidullah swiftly came to me, shook hands with me and congratulated me. By Allah, none of the Muhajirin (i.e. Emigrants) got up for me except him (i.e. Talha), and I will never forget this for Talha.”

Kab added, “When I greeted Allah’s Apostle he, his face being bright with joy, said “Be happy with the best day that you have got ever since your mother delivered you.” Kab added, “I said to the Prophet ‘Is this forgiveness from you or from Allah?’ He said, ‘No, it is from Allah.’ Whenever Allah’s Apostle became happy, his face would shine as if it were a piece of moon, and we all knew that characteristic of him.

When I sat before him, I said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Because of the acceptance of my repentance I will give up all my wealth as alms for the Sake of Allah and His Apostle. Allah’s Apostle said, ‘Keep some of your wealth, as it will be better for you.’ I said, ‘So I will keep my share from Khaibar with me,’ and added, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Allah has saved me for telling the truth; so it is a part of my repentance not to tell but the truth as long as I am alive.

By Allah, I do not know anyone of the Muslims whom Allah has helped fortelling the truth more than me. Since I have mentioned that truth to Allah’s Apostle till today, I have never intended to tell a lie. I hope that Allah will also save me (from telling lies) the rest of my life. So Allah revealed to His Apostle the Verse: “Verily, Allah has forgiven the Prophet, the Muhajirin (i.e. Emigrants (up to His Saying) And be with those who are true (in word and deed).” (9.117-119)

By Allah, Allah has never bestowed upon me, apart from His guiding me to Islam, a Greater blessing than the fact that I did not tell a lie to Allah’s Apostle which would have caused me to perish as those who have told a lie perished, for Allah described those who told lies with the worst description He ever attributed to anybody else.

Allah said:– “They (i.e. the hypocrites) will swear by Allah to you when you return to them (up to His Saying) Certainly Allah is not pleased with the rebellious people–” (9.95-96) Kab added, “We, the three persons, differed altogether from those whose excuses Allah’s Apostle accepted when they swore to him. He took their pledge of allegiance and asked Allah to forgive them, but Allah’s Apostle left our case pending till Allah gave His Judgment about it. As for that Allah said):– And to the three (He did forgive also) who remained behind.” (9.118) What Allah said (in this Verse) does not indicate our failure to take part in the Ghazwa, but it refers to the deferment of making a decision by the Prophet about our case in contrast to the case of those who had taken an oath before him and he excused them by accepting their excuses.