Sifat as-Safwa


Here are a few narrations from Sifat as-Safwa by Imam Ibn al-Jawzi, a book of short descriptions and stories of righteous men and women from the early generations of Muslims.


From the chapter on Notable Women Worshippers of Kufa:


Umm Hasaan al-Kufiyyah


Sufyan ath-Thawri and Ibn al-Mubarak and others used to visit her.


Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak related: Sufyan ath-Thawri mentioned a woman of Kufa who was called Umm Hasaan, a woman of great ijtihaad and worship.  So (we went to visit her) and entered her home, and we saw that there was nothing in it except a small worn-out mat.  Ath-Thawri said to her: “If you write a note to some of your relatives, they could help change your poor condition.” 


She said, “Sufyan, in my eyes you were better (than this) and in my heart you were greater before this moment.  I do not ask for things of this world from the One who controls it, owns it and rules over it, so how is it that I would ask those that have no control over it nor rule in it?  Sufyan, I swear by Allah, I dislike that a time comes upon me in which I am too busy for Allah, by being occupied with other than Him.”


Sufyan wept at these words.


Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak said: It has reached me that Sufyan married this woman.




Waki’ related from my father from Mansur from Ibrahim: (A worshipper named) Umm al-Aswad became crippled and lost the use of her legs.  A daughter of hers became concerned about her, but she said, “O Allah, if there is good in this, then increase it.”





From the chapter on Worshippers whose Names and Locations are Unknown:


Dhun Noon al-Misri related:  I was travelling through the desert of Bani Israeel when I came across a black slave woman, overwhelmed in rapture of love of the Most Merciful, her gaze fixed on the heavens above.


I said to her, “Peace be with you, my honorable sister.” 


She replied, “And peace be with you, Dhun Noon.”


I asked, “How do you know who I am?”


She replied, “Allah created the souls (of mankind) two thousand years before (their) bodies, and then made them circumambulate His Throne (in worship), and the ones who became acquainted there are (eternally) connected, while those who did not are (forever) divided.  My soul knew your soul when they roamed that realm together.”


I said, “I see that you are a woman of great wisdom.  Please, teach me something from what Allah has taught you.”


She said, “Abu Fayd, put upon your limbs a scale of justice (that will keep you from committing sin), until everything done for other than Allah leaves it, and your heart remains pure and free, with nothing remaining in it except the Lord (ar-Rabb), may He be Exalted.  After that, He will place you at His door, and He will befriend you anew, and will order that those who guard hidden treasures be in your obedience.”


I said, “My sister, increase me (with more knowledge).”


She said, “Abu Fayd, withhold from yourself for your own self’s sake, and obey Allah when you are alone, and He will respond to your prayers.”




Published in: on January 13, 2009 at 11:30 am  Comments (1)  

The URI to TrackBack this entry is:

RSS feed for comments on this post.

One CommentLeave a comment

  1. beautiful

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: