By Dr. M. W. Gazdar

Hazrat 'Umer bin al Khattab is a shining star on the firmament of the Muslim world. He was the second of the first four pious Caliphs of Islam whose reign proved to be an epoch-making era in the history of justice and good government. His distinguished personality and most remarkable character has left a permanent mark on Muslim history and human civilization. He possess par excellence and in abundance, qualities - those of a soldier, a statesman, a judge, an administrator and above all a true servant of Allaah.

The following anecdote provides an example of Hazrat 'Umer's piety and integrity of the highest order, a Momin can aspire to.

            One day his young son approached him with tears in his eyes, and said:

"Oh Father! My classmates look down upon me and laugh at my tattered garments sarcastically pointing out that - 'Look at him, he is the son of the Caliph.' Oh father! Am I such a contemptible creature?"

Hazrat 'Umer glanced at his son's garments, and then at his own which had fourteen holes. He was rather unhappy about the demand of his son for a new dress. However, he wrote to the Treasurer of Baitul Mal:

"Kindly grant me a loan of four Dirhams which may be recovered from my salary next month."

The request of the great Caliph for grant of a loan of four Dirhams invoked a strange reply from the guardian of the Public Treasury.

"I shall gladly grant you the loan asked for provided you give me a proof that you will be alive up to the end of the month. In case you were to expire earlier, the loan will remain outstanding against you."

Hazrat 'Umer saw the reply and heaved a deep sigh and then turning to his son, said:

"How can I provide you with a new dress when I do not have the money; nor can I get it on loan for I do not know whether I will be alive to pay it off.

"My dear son! Rest content with your dress and keep going to school. Almighty Allaah will shower His benedictions upon you."

            When we have not what we like,
            We must like what we have.
            But when I am content with a little,
            Enough is as good as a feast.

(Courtesy: Yaqeen International)






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