This story was narrated by the columnist Javed Chaudhry and it carries a powerful message so I am sharing it with you.
Haji sahib started a garments factory at the age of retirement. He would work for very long hours. This sudden change of lifestyle was very strange for a person who stayed away from any business or worldly affairs for nearly 30 years. Haji sahib had spent these years praying and meditating in his house. He had turned into a Sufi (saint). People would gather around him all day and request for prayers; he would raise his hands in their favour and Allah the Almighty would grant them their wishes.
Until one day he suddenly left all this…
Haji sahib went to his sons, collected his money and established a small garments factory. He designed ladies garments and employed 100s of female workers to stich these. Soon he grew into very successful exporter of ready-made garments. It was odd; usually people spend their life in earning money during their youth and then turn religious towards the old age but Haji sahib went 180 degree opposite to this norm. He left his ‘worldly’ business at the age 35 and turned into a Sufi. And then back to business again at the age of 65 – really odd..
It all began at the age of 35 when he was running his garments factory. Being young Haji sahib would work hard, much like any other businessman. One morning as he approached his factory, he saw a dog dragging itself into a storeroom of his factory. The dog was badly injured, probably hit by a vehicle and was hardly pulling itself. He felt bad for the dog and wanted to help. Then suddenly a thought flashed through his mind; God has promised Rizq (food) for everyone, I wonder how God would provide food to this dog? So Haji sahib started waiting..
The dog laid there unconscious all day long. As darkness approached another dog entered through the gate discretely. It had a piece of meat in its mouth. It approached the injured dog and gave it the food. Haji sahib was stunned. The situation continued for many days; 2nd dog would bring food for the injured dog. Haji sahib thought if God is arranging food for this injured dog, would he not provide me with sustenance? He pondered upon this question for long and then….He realised the concept of Tawwakal (Trust in Allah).
Haji sahib handed over his business to his brother and gave up all worldly affairs. He would fast for days on end, he would pray all night! This continued for years; Allah the Almighty provided him with sustenance and listened to his prayers. Haji sahib became known as Sufi baba. Until one day…..Sufi sahib turned back to Haji sahib again.
It was a warm winter afternoon. Sufi sahib was sitting with dozens of his followers discussing secrets of Sufism. Suddenly he remembered that story of dogs. Sufi sahib shared it with audience and said:
“Rizq (Sustenance) always follows man but we the silly human beings have started running after it. If we keep Tawakkal (trust) in Allah, rizq will reach us no matter what; just like it reached that injured dog. I learned Tawakkal from that dog! I gave up world and pursued the path of Allah’s worship. I have been living like this for 30 years and I have never slept hungry. All this is Allah’s reward on me!
There was a young professor sitting among audience. He smiled and said: Sufi baba, the Afzal (superior) dog between the two was not the injured one; rather the 2nd dog who sacrificed its food & served the injured dog for days.
Our beloved prophet Muhammad (SAW) said:
Indeed “Upper hand (Giver) is better than the Lower one (Receiver)”. Sahih Muslim
Had you admired the 2nd dog’s sacrifice and kindness Sufi baba, you would have kept your business and your factory would have provided Rizq for hundreds of your factory workers & their families.
Alas you followed the wrong dog Sufi baba. A generous wealthy businessman is better than 1000s useless poor pious. Sufi baba was stunned.
He prayed two Rakat and set off to establish his factory again. Now he prays well and does his business too!
Subhan Allah, such as wonderful lesson! Many of us have understood Twakkal wrongly. It does not mean leaving “Worldly affairs” altogether, start just praying and expecting Allah Ta’ala to provide everything.
“Verily, for a man to carry a rope and gather firewood, then come to sell it in the market and make himself independent thereby such that he can spend on his needs, that is better for him than asking people who might give him or deprive him.” Musnad, 1410
Right meaning of Tawakkal is to Do one’s best effort and then leave the results in the Almighty’s hands.
So, first & foremost we must aim to earn & provide for ourselves and then also support others. We need more of 2nd type of dogs.
Be a 2nd type of Dog:
Support Your Family & Friends;
Support Your Society;
Support Your Nation;
Help doesn’t have to be money only. You can support by teaching something useful,,,, spreading good,,,,, advising in the right direction,,,, comforting in adversity,,,, guiding to right path,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, or just by making Dua.