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The Lifeline of Kindness

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There were once two brothers in the Banu Israaeel who were both kings, ruling over separate cities. One of the brothers would treat his relatives and family members kindly and was just and fair to his subjects, while the other brother would ill-treat his relatives and family members and would oppress his subjects.

During the era of these two kings, there was a Nabi (‘alaihis salaam) to whom Allah Ta‘ala sent revelation saying, “Only three years remain from the life of the king who is kind and treats his family and subjects kindly, and thirty years remain from the life of the king who treats his family and subjects oppressively.”

The Nabi (‘alaihis salaam) informed the subjects of each king of the revelation that he had received. When they heard that the evil king would remain for thirty more years and the righteous king would pass away after three years, they were extremely grieved and worried. They thus separated between mothers and their children, abandoned food and drink and emerged to the desert (to create a scene of helplessness and despair) and began to implore Allah Ta‘ala in du‘aa, begging Him to allow the righteous king to remain over them and remove the evil king from their midst.

After imploring Allah Ta‘ala in this manner for three days, Allah Ta‘ala sent revelation to the Nabi (‘alaihis salaam) saying, “Inform my servants that I have shown them mercy and accepted their du‘aa. I have thus swopped the periods of life that remain of the righteous king and the evil king.” Hence, the evil king passed away after three years had elapsed and the righteous king remained and ruled over the people for thirty years. (Kitaabul Birri was Silah li Ibnil Jowzi pg. 56)

Lessons:

1. When a person treats people kindly and justly, he earns their love and respect. Hence, they will make du‘aa for him and will always wish well for him. However, if he oppresses people and ill-treats them, they will curse him, rejoice over his misfortune and will always wish for him to be destroyed.

2. The power of du‘aa should never be underestimated or forgotten. No matter what the predicament, and no matter how small or big it may be, if one turns to Allah Ta‘ala in du‘aa, his du‘aa will not be wasted or go without any benefit.

3. When making du‘aa to Allah Ta‘ala, one should adopt as much humility as possible. Hence, one should raise his hands like a beggar, cry like a person in utter desperation and express his need to Allah Ta‘ala with the urgency of a person who has no one else to turn to. The greater the humility in the du‘aa, the greater the chance of the du‘aa gaining acceptance.

4. Maintaining good family ties and treating relatives kindly is an action that causes a person to enjoy a long life, either through living for many years or by him being able to achieve a lot in his lifetime.