And hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together and do not become divided…(3:103)


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Hazrat Umar  ؓ narrates that when once he visited the Holy Prophet ﷺ while he was laying down on a reed mat, and it left marks on his skin. There was also a pillow filled with date chaff. Seeing him in such condition, so I said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Invoke Allah to make your followers rich, for the Persians and the Romans have been made prosperous and they have been given (the pleasures of the world), although they do not worship Allah.’ Thereupon the Prophet sat up as he was reclining. and said, ‘Are you of such an opinion, O the son of Al-Khattab? These are the people who have received the rewards for their good deeds in this world while the world Hereafter belongs to us.

Another tradition recorded in Musnad Ahmad, Jame Tirmizi and Ibne Majah also comes to the same effect. Narrates Hazrat Abdullah bin Masood  ؓ  that he said to the Holy Prophet ﷺ: O Messenge of Allah! If you had told us we would have provided you with something that would save you this trouble.’ The Messenger of  Allah ﷺ  said:

’’مَالِیَ وَ لِلدُّنْیَا وَ مَا اَنا وَ الدُّنْیَا اِلاَّکَرَاکِبٍ اِسْتَظَلَّ تَحْتَ شَجْرَۃٍ ثُمَّ رَاَحَ وَ تَرَکَھَا”

‘What is there between myself and the world? This world and I are just like a rider who stops to rest beneath the shade of a tree then goes and leaves it.”

It is a brief account of the greatest personality, mercy unto the world, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ  who lived a simple life even in his kingdom and whose lifestyle is a good model for us. Indeed, he preferred simple lifestyle almost in all walks of life such in clothing, fooding and so on. The Holy Prophet ﷺ is reported to have said, “Simplicity is part of life. (Abu Dawood) The simplicity here in no way mean to lead a simple life in a particular walk of life just like those of today’s political leaders who apparently do put on hand-woven Khadi but they appear to be a living example in other walks of life to be extravagant while the fact is that the simplicity required by the Holy Prophet ﷺ should be implemented in all walks of our life specially when he had left for a perfect model in this regard.

Simplicity is of two kinds; one adopted as unwillingly while the other willingly. The simplicity adopted as willingly means to be compelled to lead a simple life in case there is no means and available sources to enjoy and there are a number of traditions in virtues of even leading such type of simple life provided one observes patience and fortitude in it.

On the other hand, leading a simple life willingly means that though one has an abundant of means and sources through legal ways to enjoy his life, but he prefers to spend his wealth in the cause of Allah, the Almighty and for the glorification of His religion. This is the kind of simplicity preferred by the Holy Prophet ﷺ  for himself and his family. It was the same kind of simple life adopted by his blessed companions after him like Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddique ؓ, Hazrat Umar  ؓ  and many other men and women companions who despite being the caliph of their time led their lives on scanty food and clothes. Surprisingly, when a list was prepared of those who led a life of starvation, it was the governor named Hazrat Saeed bin Amir  ؓ who topped the list.

The simplicity also does not mean to lead a life of miser and parsimony, since the Holy Prophet ﷺ  said that the extravagant and miser both of them are the brothers of Satan. A companion of the Holy Prophet ﷺ  narrates his event that one day when he came to the Holy Prophet ﷺ  wearing a poor garment and he said (to him): “Have you any property? He replied: Yes. He asked: What kind is it? He said: Allah has given me camels. Sheep, horses and slaves. He then said: When Allah gives you property, let the mark of Allah’s favour and honour to you be seen.”

Obviously, living just like an indigenous and beggars despite being endowed with abundant wealth and property is nothing but being ungrateful to Allah, the Almighty. In reality, one’s piety does not lie neither in wearing patchy and outworn clothes nor eating the third-class foods and living in second-rated houses nor in its opposite. Rather, piety lies in one’s pure and sincere intention.

As a matter of fact, each and every individual should lead a balanced and moderate life considering his ability and status. He should neither let his miserable condition be a sign of poverty nor allow his expensive and shining cloths be a means of pride and haughtiness, the only outcome of which is being neglectful to one’s bounden duty and the world Hereafter being extremely busy in the belongings of this world.

In fact, one can easily find innumerable excellent characters like patience and gratefulness, humbleness and contentment, piety and abstinence, informality, naturalness and independence, more importantly, utmost inclination towards well-wishing and sympathy towards the slaves of Allah, the Almighty as well as spending his wealth in the cause of Allah, the Almighty with view to make His religion dominate all the rest of false religions on the surface of the earth.

As a matter of fact, when a man leaves leading a simple lifestyle, without doubt, he falls prey to the problems with regard to meet the basic needs of his life which causes to develop bad characters even in the most pious man. Hence, leading a simple lifestyle is preferable, since as it is proverbial that ‘prevention is better than cure.’

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