Imam Abu Nu’aym (r.a.) on the Man Who Read Swalawat with Every Step

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Imam Abu Nu’aym (r.a.) related, in his Nuzhat al-Majalis, that Imam Sufyan ats-Tsawri (r.a.) said, “I was once leaving my house when my gaze fell upon a youth who was reading, ‘Allahumma swalli ‘ala Muhammad wa ‘ala ali Muhammad,’ with every step he took.

I asked him, ‘Is there any proof for your action?’

He asked, ‘Who are you?’

I replied, ‘Sufyan ats-Tsawri.’

‘Sufyan of Iraq?’ he asked.  I replied in the affirmative.  He asked, ‘Do you have the ma’rifat of Allah?’  I replied in the affirmative.  He asked, ‘How did you attain it?’

I said, ‘He Takes the night out of the day and the day out of the night, and He Fashions the child in the mother’s womb.’

He said, ‘You have not truly recognised Him.’

I asked him, ‘So how have you come to recognise Him?’

He replied, ‘I firmly decide on doing something, but I end up having to cancel it.  I resolve to do something but find that I am unable to fulfill it.  Through this, I have realised that there is Another Being Who is Governing my affairs.’

I asked him regarding his conferring of blessings.  He said, ‘I went for the hajj with my mother.  My mother passed away during the journey.  Her face turned black and her stomach bloated whereby I realised that she had committed a grave sin.  As I lifted my hands towards the sky to beseech Allah, I saw a cloud coming from Tihama from which a man appeared.  He passed his hand over my mother’s face making it luminous and over her stomach, causing the swelling to disappear.  I asked him, ‘Who are you?’  You have alleviated me and my mother of this great affliction.’

He replied, ‘I am your prophet, Muhammad.’

I asked him for some advice.  The Prophet (s.a.w.) instructed, ‘Whenever you take a step, read ‘Allahumma swalli ‘ala Muhammad wa ‘ala ali Muhammad.’’”


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