From Luxury to Simplicity​

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(Wife of Moulana Qaasim Nanotwi [rahimahullah] - Part Three)

The wife of Moulana Qaasim (rahimahullah) hailed from the village of Deoband. Her father, Shaikh Karaamat Husain, was a wealthy man, and hence on the occasion of her nikaah, when she departed for her husband’s home, her father sent her off with abundant clothing, expensive jewellery and many household items.

On the first night, Moulana Qaasim (rahimahullah) addressed her saying, “Now that Allah Ta‘ala has joined us in marriage, there will have to be compatibility between us. However, in our present condition, this will be difficult, as you are wealthy and I am a pauper. We thus have one of two options; either I become wealthy, which is obviously difficult, or you become like me. Hence you rather become poor like me, since this is easy.”

Without any hesitation or reservation, she wholeheartedly responded, “I give you the full right to do with my belongings as you please.” Accordingly, the very next morning, Moulana (rahimahullah) contributed all her jewellery and wealth in the path of Allah Ta‘ala.

Some time thereafter, when she visited her parent’s home, her father noticed that she was not wearing any jewellery. When he asked her the reason for this, she explained to him what had transpired. Despite him not saying anything, he felt it inappropriate for his daughter to appear before her relatives dressed in this manner. Hence, since he was very wealthy, he gave her all that wealth and jewellery once more.

When she returned home, Moulana Qaasim (rahimahullah) observed that she had returned with everything once again. That night, he again encouraged her to prepare for the Hereafter by spending this wealth in the path of Allah Ta‘ala. Once again, she gave him the right to do with her wealth as he wished. Thus, the next morning, he gave all her valuables in the path of Allah Ta’ala once again.

The wife of Moulana Qaasim (rahimahullah) would often say, “The love for wealth and jewellery had thereafter totally left my heart. In fact, I have even developed an aversion to these things, and in my entire life thereafter, I never bought jewellery, nor had a desire for expensive garments.”

(Sawaanih-e-Qaasimi vol. 1, pgs. 507 - 513)

Lessons:

1. We can well imagine that when a woman hails from a wealthy home, and grew up in the lap of luxury, it would not have been easy for her to give away her wealth, belongings and jewellery. Furthermore, many women would be worried about what their relatives, friends and society in general will say about them after their standard of living has been lowered. However, she understood that obedience to the husband is of paramount importance – especially in the case where her husband was exhorting her to follow the sunnah of simplicity. Hence, she wholeheartedly submitted and sacrificed her wealth.

2. As far as possible, the in-laws should avoid interfering in the affairs of their married children. When the father of Moulana’s wife saw that his wife was dressed in a simple manner, he did not fight with Moulana (rahimahullah) or take him to task. He accepted that since his daughter was the wife of Moulana (rahimahullah), she should try to please him and conform to his wishes.

3. The love of wealth is a sickness that will plague one until his death. In this sickness, one will hanker after more and more, with his appetite never becoming satiated. It is only through adopting the sunnah lifestyle of simplicity that we will gain true happiness in our hearts and feel true satisfaction.