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Venerating the Name of Allah: the Story of Bishr the Barefoot

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  • Venerating the Name of Allah: the Story of Bishr the Barefoot

    Assalamu 'alaykum,

    This is a rather well-known story of how venerating "just" the name of Allah alone can be a turning point of your life. Now imagine if you venerate Allah Himself!

    Hadhrat Bishr al-Hafi (rahimullah) was born in Merv and settled at Baghdad. The beginning of his conversion happened as follows. He had lived a life of dissipation, and one day as he was staggering along the road drunk he found a piece of paper on which was written, “In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.” He bought some attar of roses and perfumed the paper with it, and deposited it reverently in his house. That night a certain holy man had a dream in which he was bidden to tell Hadhrat Bishr al-Hafi (rahimullah) :

    “Thou hast perfumed my Name, so I have perfumed thee. Thou hast exalted my Name, so I have exalted thee. Thou hast purified my Name, so I have purified thee. By my Majesty, I will surely perfume thy name in this world and the world to come.”

    “He is a dissolute fellow,” thought the saint. “Perhaps I am seeing erroneously.” So he made ablution, prayed and returned to sleep. He saw the selfsame dream a second and a third time. In the morning he arose and went in search of Hadhrat Bishr al-Hafi (rahimullah) . “He is at a wine-party,” he was told. He went to the house where Hadhrat Bishr al-Hafi (rahimullah) was.

    “Was Bishr here?” he enquired. “He was,” they said. “But he is drunk and incapable.” “Tell him I have a message for him,” said the saint. “A message from whom?” demanded Hadhrat Bishr al-Hafi (rahimullah) when he was told. “A message from God,” replied the saint.

    “Alas!” cried Hadhrat Bishr al-Hafi (rahimullah), bursting into tears. “Is it a message of chiding or of chastisement? Wait, till I tell my friends. Friends,” he addressed his drinking-companions, “I have had a call. I am going. I bid you farewell. You will never see me again at this business.”

    And from that day onward he lived so saintly, that none heard his name mentioned without heavenly peace invaded his heart. He took to the way of self-denial, and so overwhelmed was he by the vision of God that he never put shoes on his feet. For that reason he was called Bishr, the Barefoot.

    “Why do you not wear shoes?” he was asked. “I was barefooted the day when I made my peace with God,” he said, “and ever since I am ashamed to wear shoes. Moreover God Almighty says, ‘I have made the earth a carpet for you.’ It is not seemly to tread with shoes on the carpet of kings.”


    Some say he's a teacher of Imam Ahmad but some also say he's only a companion.
    "I know more Sunnah and Hadith than Bishr al-Hafi, but he knows Allah better than I do." --Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (validation needed).
    Last edited by budi.sudaryo; 15-11-15, 08:54 AM.
    I'm on a strict time management regiment and have to limit my time online. Therefore I have to reply selectively. Please don't be offended if I ignore your questions. :jkk:


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