Stories of Repentance

Shaqiq رحمة لله علیھ said,

"Weeping over past misdeeds, being afraid of perpetrating a sin again, forsaking the company of evildoers, and adhering to the company of the righteous- these are the hallmarks of a sincere repentance."

Hazrat Hasan رحمة لله علیھ once wrote the following short letter to Umar bin Abdul Azeez رحمة لله علیھ :

"Fear what Allah Ta’ala told you to fear. Take what is in your hands, and use it for what is to come. At the moment of death, sure news will come to you and peace."

Umar رحمة لله علیھ wrote back, asking Hazrat Hasan رحمة لله علیھ to advise him some more. Hazrat Hasan رحمة لله علیھ wrote back:

"Indeed the terror of the Day of Resurrection is greater than you might think. Indeed, frightful matters are near at hand. You will have to face all of that, either by facing it all and being saved, or by facing it all and being destroyed. Know that he who takes account of his own deeds will succeed, and that he who is negligent in this regard will fail. Whoever looks at the outcomes of his actions will be saved, while he who obeys his desires will be misguided. Whoever is patient and forbearing will gain profits. Whoever remains awake and vigilant regarding his deeds will be safe, whoever is safe reflects, whoever reflects sees, whoever sees understands, and whoever understands knows. Then if you slip, return and repent. And when you are remorseful, then refrain [from sins]. When you are ignorant, ask. And when you are angry, restrain your anger."

 

Imaam Ghazaali (r.a) reported that Moosa عليه السلام asked Hazrat Khidr عليه السلام to advise him. He said,

"Be someone who constantly smiles, and not someone who is constantly angry. Be someone who benefits others, and not someone who harms others. Refrain from argumentation. Do not walk around without purpose. Do not laugh without a reason. Do not disparage wrongdoers by mentioning their mistakes to them. And cry over your misdeeds, O son of 'Imraan."

As two servants of the ruler, an-Naasir, were talking to one another, one of them said, "I wonder what the ruler is doing today?" The other said, "I never saw him more afraid and sincere than he is today. He is by himself, wearing course clothing and sitting down on dirt. He is crying out loud and acknowledging his sins. I heard him say, 'My Lord, here is my forelock in Your Hand, if You are to punish the people, and You are All-Wise and All-Just, then how will I, with all of my sins, escape your punishment?'"

At that moment, Mundhir bin Sa'eed رحمة لله علیھ was passing by, and he heard what the ruler's servant said. Mundhir رحمة لله علیھ looked at him and said, "O young servant, wear a raincoat back with you, for if the mighty one on earth becomes fearful of Allah's punishment, then the All-Mighty One in the heavens will have mercy on His slaves [and bless them with rain and sustenence]."

Abdullah bin Marzuq رحمة لله علیھ was drunk one day and consequently missed Salaah. His female servant came to him with a piece of burning wood and placed it on his leg. He jumped up with an expression of pain on his face.

"If you cannot withstand the fire of the earth, then how will you withstand the Fire of the Hereafter [which is 70 times more intense than the fire of this world]?"

Having understood the point of the painful lesson, Abdullah bin Marzuq رحمة لله علیھ repented. Thereafter, he performed his Salaah on time and gave away a great deal in charity. After some time passed, Hazrat Fudayl ibn Iyaad رحمة لله علیھ and Hazrat Ibn Uyaynah رحمة لله علیھ visited him, and just by looking at him and the furniture of his home, they noticed a drastic change in his lifestyle. They asked, "No one forsakes something for Allah except that Allah compensates him with something equal or better, so what did Allah compensate you with for what you abandoned?"

"Contentment for the situation I find myself to be in," he replied.

A tyrant ruler once left his castle to walk around the streets of his kingdom in order to enjoy himself. As he was walking, he came across a number of gardens and decided to enter one of them. After spending a short while looking at the garden's beautiful trees, he became thirsty, and so he asked the owner of the garden, who was sitting nearby, for a drink. The owner told him that though there was no water nearby, the ruler was free to take a pomegranate and quench his thirst with that. The ruler agreed, and when he took his first bite from the pomegranate that was given to him, he was amazed to see how wonderfully sweet it was. He said to himself, "This pomegranate is indeed wonderful."

He decided to evict the owner and take possession of the garden. But first, he wanted to make sure that all of the pomegranates of the garden were equally wonderful and sweet, and so he asked for another one. When he began to eat a second pomegranate, he was shocked to see that it was very bitter and foul tasting.

He asked the owner if it was from the same tree as the first pomegranate. "Yes," said the owner.

"Then how come it is not as sweet as the first?"

"O leader, perhaps you intended to do some evil, which caused its taste to change," said the righteous garden owner.

"By Allah, the man has spoken the truth," thought the ruler. He repented from his intention to usurp the garden, and decided he wanted to enjoy another pomegranate, and so he asked for one. When he tasted it, it was even sweeter than the first one he had eat. What is more, it was from the very same tree. 

There was once a butcher who fell in love with his neighbour’s daughter. One day, the girl's parents sent her on an errand to the neighbouring town. Seeing that she was alone, the butcher followed her until she reached a secluded place, whereupon he made his presence known to her. When he tried to seduce her, the girl said, "Do not do so! Indeed, I love you even more than you love me, but I fear Allah."

The butcher's jaws dropped and he said in self-reproach, "You fear Allah and I don't!" He left her alone and repented for his intentions.

On his way back, he became extremely thirsty. He soon came across a Prophet from the Prophets of the Children of Israel. Noticing the expression on the butcher's face, the Prophet asked, "What is the matter with you?"

"Extreme thirst," said the butcher.

"Let us go supplicate to Allah for rain."

"I have no good deed that makes my supplication worthy of being answered," said the butcher.

"Then let me invoke Allah while you say 'Ameen' to my invocations," said the Prophet. 

He then began to supplicate, and the butcher said, 'Ameen,' after each of the supplications. 

Suddenly, a cloud appeared, and rain fell from it upon the nearby town, after which it approached the two men. Wherever the butcher walked, the cloud followed after him, instead of hovering over the Prophet.

"You claim that you have no good deeds," said the Prophet. "Yet despite the fact that it was I who supplicated while you said 'Ameen' the cloud shaded the city and then it followed you. What is your story?"

The butcher then told him what had happened with his neighbour’s daughter.


"One who repents to Allah has a ranking that no other person can achieve," said the Prophet.

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