AsSalam Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakaatuhu.
I was informed by a brother about the weakness of the story
This story has been weakened by Ath-Thahabee and there is a post on it on the forum of shyakh Maahir bin Thaafir Al-Qahtaanee here:
This story about “Istighfar” (seeking forgiveness from Allah) is from the life of Imam Ahmed Bin Hanbal, who is considered as a renowned scholar of Islam and a famous theologian. Imam Ahmed is also considered to be the founder of the Hanbali school of fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence) and is one of the most celebrated Sunni theologians, often referred to as the “Sheikh ul-Islam” or the “Imam of Ahl al-Sunnah.”
During his old age, while Imam Ahmed was travelling he stopped by a town. After the prayers, he wanted to stay for the night in the masjid yard because he didn’t know anyone in the town. Owing to his humility, he hadn’t introduced himself to anyone thinking that if he did, he would be welcomed by many people.
Failing to recognize Ahmed bin Hanbal, the caretaker of the mosque refused to let him stay in the mosque. As Imam Ahmed was quite old, the caretaker had to drag him out of the mosque. On seeing this, a baker from a nearby place felt pity for this man (Imam Ahmed) and offered to be the host to him for the night. During his stay with the baker, Imam Ahmed observed that the baker would constantly recite Istighfar (seek forgiveness from Allah). Imam Ahmed asked the baker if the constant practice of saying Istighfar had any effect on him. The baker responded by telling Imam Ahmed that Allah had accepted all of his duas (supplications), except one. When he asked him what dua was it that hadn’t been accepted, the baker replied that he had been asking Allah to provide him the privilege to meet the famous scholar Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal.
On this, Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal said that Allah had not only listened to his dua but had dragged him onto his (the baker’s) doorsteps. [Summarized from Al Jumuah magazine, vol 19, issue 7]
This story is a reminder of the power of saying Istighfar (seeking forgiveness) frequently. Let’s remember that the prophet used to say Istighfar frequently during the day.
Internet Source: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SalafisOfFlorida/message/171
AsSalam Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakaatuhu
On the authority of Suhaib (may Allaah be pleased with him) he said: The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam said:
“Amazing is the affair of the believer, verily all of his affair is good and this is not for no one except the believer. If something of good/happiness befalls him he is grateful and that is good for him. If something of harm befalls him he is patient and that is good for him” (Saheeh Muslim #2999)
From this we understand that the state of affairs for the believer changes in the life of this world. Shaykhul Islaam ibn Qayyim al-Jawzeeyah (may Allaah have mercy upon him) said regarding the state of affairs for the believer:
“One of them is the state of (receiving a) blessing. It’s obligatory upon him (the believer) in this state (to display) the gratitude.
The second: is the state (of being) tested. It is obligatory upon him (the believer) in this state (to observe) the patience.
The third: is the state (of committing) a sin. It is obligatory upon him (the believer) in this state to seek the forgiveness from it (the sin).
The servant does not go outside of the fluctuation between these three states.
One of them is either a blessing or a virtue from Allaah of good health, wealth, a child to other than that.
It is obligatory upon him that he thanks Allaah for this bounty. Let the servant contemplate over the statement of Allaah:
“ ٱعۡمَلُوٓاْ ءَالَ دَاوُ ۥدَ شُكۡرً۬اۚ وَقَلِيلٌ۬ مِّنۡ عِبَادِىَ ٱلشَّكُورُ “
“Work you, O family of Dâwud (David), with thanks!” But few of My slaves are grateful.” (surah Sabaa: 13)
So how many of those whom Allaah has favored them:
“وَإِن تَعُدُّواْ نِعۡمَةَ ٱللَّهِ لَا تُحۡصُوهَآۗ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ لَغَفُورٌ۬ رَّحِيمٌ۬”
“And if you would count the favours of Allâh, never could you be able to count them. Truly! Allâh is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (surah an-Nahl: 18)
How many show thanks to Allaah for these favours? Less than a few!
Or there is a (state of being) tested.
It is obligatory upon him in this state (to observe) the patience. Meaning that Allaah from His overwhelming wisdom He could test the believing servant from the different types of test. It’s obligatory upon him to (observe) the patience because this is from the belief in the divine decree and from submitting the the decree of Allaah. Also (the servant must know) that what has befalling him was never going to pass him by. All of that is written in the book of Allaah (al-Lawhul-Mahfooth). Verily Allah doesn’t test him (the servant) to destroy him. He only test him in order to test his patience and servitude. Verily there is for Allaah upon the servant servitude in times of hardship just as there is for Him (Allaah) upon the servant servitude in times of happiness. There also is for Him (Allaah) upon the servant servitude in that which he (the servant) dislikes just as there is for Him (Allaah) upon the servant servitude in that which he (the servant) loves. Most of the creation give the servitude in that which they love. However the matter is giving the servitude in that which there is his hardship.
The other state is (a state of) sin.
It is obligatory upon him (the servant) in this state to seek the forgiveness this is clear with regards to the obligation of turning to Allaah (repentance) displaying ones need for him.”
- Have You Thanked Allah? – by Imâm Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
Taken from “Uddat as-Sâbireen wa Dhâkirat ash-Shâkireen” by Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
This article contains advice from the Salaf on remembering and being grateful for the blesseings that Allah is constantly showering us wit.
- Thank Allah by saying AlHamdulillah – Meaning and Explanation – from Tafseer Ibn Katheer – Surah Fatiha
- Sajdat al-Shukr – Prostration of Thankfulness – Al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah Li’l-Buhooth al-‘Ilmiyyah wa’l-Iftaa’, 7/266
- An Explanation on the Excellence of Patience [PDF] – by Shaikh Saalih al-Fawzaan
And indeed patience is the testing of the soul, and it is of three types: patience on the obedience of Allah, patience on the disobedience of Allah, and patience on the painful events from the Qadr (PreDecree) of Allah.
- The Cure for Individuals and Societies – Al-Istiqaamah Magazine, Issue No.8
- The Most Excellent Way of Seeking Forgiveness – Shaikh Abdur-Razzaaq ibn Abdul-Muhsin al-Abbaad
- Between The Past And The Future – by Imâm Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah – al-Fawaa’id, pp 151-152 Al-Istiqaamah, No. 2