The Appearance And Social Status That Sometimes Hides People Who Has a High Status In The Sight of Allaah- [Oways Al-Qarnee and Others]


In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.

Umar Ibnul Khattaab [may Allaah be pleased with him] said:

I heard Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) saying, “Indeed, the best of the Taabi’een [i.e. followers of the Sahaabah] would be a person who would be a man called Uways. He would have his mother (living with him) and he would have (a small) sign of leprosy [on his skin]. If you meet him, ask him to seek Allaah’s forgiveness for you”.

Usair Bin Jabir reported that whenever the people from Yemen came to help (the Muslim army at the time of jihad), Umar [may Allaah be pleased with him] would ask: Is Uways ibn ‘Aamir among you? When he found Uways he said: Are you Uways ibn ‘Aamir? He said: Yes. He said: Are you from Muraad then from Qaran? He said: Yes. He said: Did you have leprosy, then you recovered from it except for a spot the size of a dirham? He said: Yes. He said: Do you have a mother? He said: Yes. He said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) say: “There will come to you Uways ibn ‘Aamir with the reinforcements from Yemen, from Muraad then from Qaran. He had leprosy but he recovered from it except for a spot the size of a dirham. He has a mother and he honours her. If he were to swear in the name of Allah that something should happen, Allah would cause it to happen. If you can ask him to pray for forgiveness for you then do so.” Pray for forgiveness for me. And he prayed for forgiveness for him. ‘Umar said to him: Where are you headed? He said: Kufa. He said: Shall I write to the governor for you? He said: Being among the common folk is dearer to me.  The following year, a man from among their nobles performed Hajj and he met ‘Umar, who asked him about Uways. He said: I left him in a shabby house with meagre provisions. He said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) say: “There will come to you Uways ibn ‘Aamir with the reinforcements from Yemen, from Muraad then from Qaran. He had leprosy but he recovered from it except for a spot the size of a dirham. He has a mother and he honours her. If he were to swear in the name of Allah that something should happen, Allah would cause it to happen. If you can ask him to pray for forgiveness for you then do so.” So he went to Uways and said: Pray for forgiveness for me. He said: You have just come from a sacred journey, so pray for forgiveness for me. He said: Pray for forgiveness for me. He said: You have just come from a sacred journey, so pray for forgiveness for me. He said: Did you meet ‘Umar? He said: Yes. So he prayed for forgiveness for him, and the people came to know of his piety, so he left. Usayr said: His garment (allocated annually by the state) was a cloak (burdah) and every time anyone saw him he would say: From where did Uways get this cloak? [Saheeh Muslim 2542]

 

Brief Reminder On The Above Hadeeth By Imaam An-Nawawi [may Allaah have mercy upon him]

a: This story of Oways is a clear miracle of Allaah’s Messenger [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him].

 

b: The Messenger’s statement “If you meet him, ask him to seek Allaah’s forgiveness for you” is a manifest virtue of Oways, and this hadeeth shows that it is desired for one to ask for the supplication of the righteous people, even if the one who is asking is more virtuous than the one who is asked to supplicate.

c:  The statement of the Messenger “The best of the Taabi’een [i.e. followers of the Sahaabah] is a man called Oways” is very clear regarding the fact that he is the best of the Taabi’een. But if it is said, “Indeed, Ahmad Bin Hanbal did say that the best of the Taabi’een is Sa’eed Ibnul Musayyib”, so the response to this is that what they intended is that Sa’eed Ibnul Musayyib is the best in the Sharee’ah sciences, such Tafseer, hadeeth and other than it, but not the best with regards to being virtuous in the sight of Allaah [The Exalted].

d: When Umar Ibnul Khattaab [may Allaah be pleased with] met Oways [may Allaah have mercy upon him], he said him, “Where are you headed?” Oways said, “Kufa”. Umar said, “Shall I write to the governor for you?” He said, “Being among the common folk is dearer to me”. This is preferring to be unknown and hiding one’s state of affairs. [Ref 1]

Another Hadeeth In Saheeh Muslim That Reminds Us Not to Underestimate The Status of People Merely Due to Their Appearance or Social Status

The Messenger (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said:

رُبَّ أَشْعَثَ مَدْفُوعٍ بِالأَبْوَابِ لَوْ أَقْسَمَ عَلَى اللَّهِ لأَبَرَّهُ

‘’Many a person with dishevelled hair and covered with dust is turned away from the doors (whereas) were he to swear by Allaah (about something), Allaah will fulfil it’’. [Sahih Muslim Number 2622]

This type of person is one whom the people drive away from their doors in humiliation- he has no status in the sight of the people; but he is someone that if he were to swear by Allaah about something, Allaah will make it happen as an honour for him- by answering his request and safeguarding him from sin in relation to his oath. This is due to his great station in the sight of Allaah (The Exalted), even though he is someone despised in the sight of the people. It is said that the meaning of [الْقَسَمِ in this hadeeth is (الدُّعَاءُ – supplication) and (إِبْرَارُهُ   ) means (إِجَابَتُهُ   -the response to the supplication)] [Ref 2]

This person is a close friend among the close friends of Allaah, and was he to swear by Allaah (about something); Allaah will make it happen due to his high status in the sight of Allaah, even though he is driven away from the doors. If he intercedes (for someone), his intercession will not be accepted; if he is absent, he is not missed, but he is a great one in the sight of Allaah. [Ref 3]


Ref 1: An Excerpt from Sharh Saheeh Muslim by Imaam An-Nawawi. Vol 15. Pages 76-78. Slightly paraphrased

Ref 2: An Excerpt from Sharh Saheeh Muslim’ Vol 15 page 144. Slightly parapherqased

Ref 3: It’haaf At-Tullaab Bi-Sharhi Mandhoomah al-Aadaab’ page 102. By Shaikh Saaleh Al-Fawzaan (may Allaah preserve him). slightly paraphrased

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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