(Abu Muslim Al-Khawlaani [rahimahullah] #2)
‘Alqamah bin Marthad (rahimahullah) has mentioned that eight Taabi‘een had excelled in attaining the highest levels of zuhd (asceticism). Among these eight Taabi‘een was Abu Muslim Khawlaani (rahimahullah).
Explaining the zuhd of Abu Muslim (rahimahullah), ‘Alqamah bin Marthad (rahimahullah) quoted the following incident as an example of his disinterest in the world:
Abu Muslim (rahimahullah) would not sit with any person who was engaged in speaking of the dunya. If the person with whom he was seated began to speak of anything related to the dunya, Abu Muslim (rahimahullah) would immediately turn away and leave.
On one occasion, Abu Muslim (rahimahullah) entered the masjid and saw a few people sitting in a group. Abu Muslim (rahimahullah) joined them in the hope that they were engaged in the zikr of Allah Ta‘ala. However, on sitting with them, he heard one person say, “My slave arrived having earned such-and-such wealth”, while another was saying, “I equipped my slave (to begin earning wealth)”.
When he heard the subject of their conversation, Abu Muslim (rahimahullah) was extremely disappointed. He addressed them saying, “Subhaanallah! Do you know the example of yourselves and myself? Our example is that of a man caught in a heavy deluge of rain. As the rain began to soak him, he turned and caught sight of two large doors. He grew hopeful of finding shelter there and thought to himself, ‘If only I can enter this home and seek shelter until the rain ceases.’ However, as soon as he entered the home, he found, to his dismay, that it had no roof and thus could afford him no shelter. I am that person. I joined your gathering hoping that you were people engaged in zikr and other acts of worship, but instead discovered that you are people of the dunya.”
(Sifatus Safwah vol. 2, pg. 370)
1. The pious friends of Allah Ta‘ala understand that the dunya is a great distraction that can preoccupy a person’s heart, turning his attention away from Allah Ta‘ala. That is why they strive to keep their relationship with the dunya as minimal as possible.
2. A person is greatly influenced by the company that he keeps. If he regularly associates with businessmen, he will become business-minded and will thus see everything in the light of business. Similarly, if a woman keeps the company of women who are ‘shopaholics’, she will also develop an interest in shopping, even if she does not need to buy anything. Thus, if one keeps the company of the pious, one will gain the mindset of Islam and the sunnah and will see everything in the light of Deen. It is therefore of utmost importance that we strive to link ourselves to the pious and benefit from their teachings.
3. When a person’s heart is soaked in the love of wealth, then even if he is seated in the masjid, attending a janaazah, performing salaah or attending a ta’leem, his mind and heart will be occupied with the thought of wealth.