Living Islam Today
A Magazine for Muslim Americans
Vol. 1 Issue 1                Spring 1420/ 2000

Features

IFNA

page 2

          He traveled all over the Muslim world and attended different colleges and studied with different teachers. He earned many degrees along the way.  After a few more years he settled in the city of Baghdad, which at that time, was the most important city in the Muslim world.  He taught in a small school and went to college at night and never left his desire to master everything he could to be a truly thankful servant of Allah.
          One late night he was on his way home when he encountered a rowdy band of drunks on the street. One of them had a guitar and was playing it in a sloppy, annoying way. Bayazid wanted to avoid them but they were harassing everyone who passed by. 
          As Bayazid walked by them, the leader of the bunch started insulting him in a very nasty way, calling him names and taunting him.
          Bayazid told the man to stop his foolish talk but this made the drunken man even more angry.   The drunk picked up his guitar, lifted it high over his head and then brought it down, smashing it over Bayazid's head! The guitar shattered into a dozen pieces and blood streamed down Bayazid's forehead. 
          The rest of the drunks paused for a minute and then started yelling and laughing again.  Bayazid didn't say a word and went home in silence, wiping the blood off his head with a handkerchief.
          When his teacher asked him what happened, why he had become so motivated to study and learn, Bayazid explained how his mother had released him to serve only Allah. The teacher smiled and hugged the boy firmly.
          In time, after he had become a young man, Bayazid went out on the road in search of more advanced learning, as was the custom in those days. 
The next day, Bayazid gave a basket of candy and a few coins to his servant and directed him to go to the leader of the drunks and tell him the following words:
          "Last night my head was responsible for breaking your guitar. Please buy a new one with this money. And also I found that your tongue was very sour last night. Please remove the sourness of your tongue by eating these sweet candies."
          When the now sober man received the gifts, he was so filled with shame and repentance that he brought his entire rowdy group to Bayazid and begged for forgiveness. He gave up drinking and became a righteous Muslim from that moment onward.

          After a few more years in Baghdad, Bayazid again took to the road and traveled in many lands where the people were not yet all Muslims.   
          He traveled all over India and brought thousands of people to Islam. News of his spiritual insight and wisdom reached far and wide.
          Years passed and when he was a middle-aged man, Bayazid received a note from his first teacher, his teacher from the school when he was a boy. It said, "Come to me."
          So Bayazid immediately sold everything he had in India and began the long journey back home to Persia.
Along the way, huge crowds of people gathered in every town and village he passed through. Everyone wanted to get a glimpse of the famous scholar they had heard so much about.     
          Then, after a month of traveling, Bayazid finally reached the small village school where he had first learned to love knowledge.
          His teacher, who was very old by now, told Bayazid to sit down in front of him. He paused a moment and then he said, "Bayazid, you have fulfilled your promise to Allah. Now go and serve your mother."
  When he heard his mother being mentioned, a rush of feelings overwhelmed his heart and 
he was filled with an unstoppable desire to see her again.
But he knew a huge crowd was gathering  in the center of town in anticipation of seeing him, put on a dark robe with a hood and waited until night had fallen. Then he snuck out of the teacher's house through a back door and made his way to his mother's cottage.
          Before he could knock on the door, he heard her praying inside. 
She was saying, "Merciful Allah. I have dedicated my son to your path. It is for You to love him and for You to take care of him."
  
Bayazid couldn't hold his sorrow in a moment longer. He burst out in uncontrollable tears and sobbing.  His mother heard someone crying outside the door and she called out, "Have you come  back, my son?"
Bayazid replied in a choked voice, "Yes, mother, I have returned. Please, open the door and see your son again."
          The door was opened after a moment and Bayazid threw himself at his mother's feet and cried. She carefully bent down and pulled him up while passing her hands over his head and face.  
          She then said, "I've wished for nothing more than to see your face again, my son, but, alas, you have come too late. For I can see no more."  
         
His mother had become blind. She would never again be able to look upon the face of her long lost son, the one she gave to Allah so many years before.       
   
From that  moment forward, Bayazid vowed to be thankful to his mother for the rest of his life and for as long  as she lived, he never left her side.
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