STORIES OF MESSENGERS - (8)SOLOMON [HAZRAT SULEMAN(PBUH)]
HAZRAT SULEMAN (Alaihis Salaam)
Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) was the prophet of Allah. His father was Hazrat Daoud (A.S.). His mother was also a very noble lady. Since his childhood, she used to preach him good things. Once she said, My son Suleman, give up the habit of sleeping the whole night. One who does so does not remember Allah during the night; his good deeds may decrease on the Day of Resurrection.
Allah had endowed Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) with wisdom and intelligence since his very childhood. Once his father Hazrat Daoud (A.S.) delivering his judgement in a case. Hazrat Suleman (A.S.), who was then only eleven years old, was also sitting beside him. The case was between two persons one of whom had a claim that the goats of the other person had gazed his entire field and destroyed it totally. The loss was estimated as much as the cost of all the goats. Therefore, Hazrat Daoud (A.S.) decided that all the goats should be handed over to the sufferer as reparation.
Hazrat Suleman (A.S.), who was listening to the entire proceeding, intervened and said, Father, your judgement is absolutely right. The farmer must get his loss repaired. But I have a better idea in my mind. Hazrat Dauoud (A.S.) said, Tell me, my son. What is that idea? Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) replied, The herd of these goats should be handed over to the farmer to utilize them and their Milk, The owner of these goats, and the other hand, be asked to sow seed and cultivate a crop in the farmers field. When it grows as much as the destroyed one, he should make it as well as the field over to the farmer and take back his goats.
Hazrat Daoud (A.S.) very much appreciated his sons decision and approved of it.
Hazrat Daoud (A.S.) also ruled over a very large country. After his death, Allah appointed Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) as His prophet on earth and also made him the ruler of that country. Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) ruled not only on the human beings but Allah had made even birds, animals genii and the wind his subservient. He had also particularly blessed Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) with the ability to understand the language of animals. The wind and the genii worked for Hazrat Suleman (A.S.). The wind flew his thrown in a moment from one place to another. He would travel; from one city to another in one day where as an ordinary man can do so in a month. This was all by the strength of Allah, on whose orders the wind took His prophet from one place to another. Today, man can make and fly an aeroplane all over the world with the help of his wisdom which again has been granted by Allah,
Allah, who created man, the animals and everything in the world, also created genii whom we cannot see. The genii are also required to obey Allahs orders. The genii are good as well as bad. Those genii who have faith in Allahs prophets are good, while those who disbelieve are bad.
Allah had made Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) the king of the genii also. They would obey him and perform the feats which are not possible by man. They would dip into deep oceans and retrieve precious pearl from their bottom for Hazrat Suleman (A.S.). They would build huge castles for him, make weapons for wards, and perform hundreds of such deeds as were out of a mans capability. This was exclusive blessing of Allah on Hazrat Suleman (A.S.).
Allah had also given uncalculateable wealth to Hazrat Suleman (A.S.). But Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) always deemed it as Allahs trust and spent it only on the poor and the needy. He never used that wealth for his won comforts and luxuries nor built high palaces with it. To meet his personal needs he used to make baskets and was content with its income.
It is true that to be rich is not bad but to spend the wealth for ones own comforts and luxuries is bad. Wealth and property are Allahs trust. A man, who gets this wealth but does not forget Allah, spends it on the poor and needy and according to the will of Allah is a good man.
Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) would spend most of the wealth Allah had given him on the spread of Allahs Deen and to help the poor and the needy. He also loved horses as these were used in wars in the way of Allah. He had, therefore, many a horses of high breeds at his stable. Out of his love for the horses, once he sent for them which were in thousands. He was pleased to see that the horses were strong and robust. He could not keep from expressing his pleasure and said, I love them is, in fact, equal to remembering Allah.
It is true that if a man loves his wealth because he spends it for Allahs Deen and to help the needy, such love is also like worshipping Allah.
The horses were then withdrawn from Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) It was evening by them. But he again sent for them and this time lovingly started rubbing their ankles and patting on their necks. His love with horses has also been mentioned in the Holy Quran. Allah liked very much how Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) valued the horses which were used in Jihad for the sake of His Deen.
Once, Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) was leading a big caravan to somewhere. The caravan consisted of men genii, manner. The caravan consisted of men genii, animals and birds; All were moving in rows in a proper manner. The carvan reached near a valley where innumerable ants lived. As the carvan drew closer, the chief of the ants said, O ants, the caravan of Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) are coming. Rush into your moles lest they crush you under their feet without knowing how many ants were killed.
As Allah had blessed Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) with the ability to understand the language of birds and animals, he heard what the chief of the ants had said. He was pleased to hear it. He smiled and thanked Allah saying, O Allah, I am very thankful that you not only granted me such a big kingdom but also enabled me to understand the language of animals. It is your great obligation on me. O Allah enable me to become a thankful servant of Yours, value Your bounties and duly thank for the, O Lord, You sent blessing on my mother and blessed my father with a large kingdom and prophethood. O Allah, enable me to perform such deeds as would please You. O Lord send Your blessings on me and count me among Your noble servants.
Although it was a small thing, it moved Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) so much that he recalled all the bounties of Allah after hearing the voice of the ant. He thanked offer these bounties and asked Allah to enable him to do good deeds and count him among his noble servants. We should also thank Allah every moment for His bounties; ask Him to enable us to perform good deeds and Pray: O Allah, count us among your noble servants.
Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) was the prophet of Allah as well as the monarch of his country. This does not mean that Hazrat Suleman was like the so many other monarchs in the past. Islam is against monarchy because a monarch considers himself the owner of his country and wants to rule over everybody. A monarch who has more strength and army wages war against the one who ahs less strength and army and usurps his country. Thus he goes on expending his kingdom. Besides, a monarch also considers his right at enthrone anybody of his liking after his death. Generally, a monarchs son take s his fathers place.
Islam disapproves of all this. According to its teachings Allah is the only Lord of the entire universe and has the right to run the affairs of this earth according to His laws. Allah has authorized all those who accept Him as their Lord to select the best from among them as their chief to run the affairs of the country. This man is called a Khaleefa (caliph). He does not rule the people according his won laws but follows and makes others to follow the laws which Allah sends from time to time through His prophets.
The prophets of Allah are the best of the man kind. They would also be the caliph of the Muslims. They would follow and make others also to follow the laws of Allah. Allah has not given any family or race or the general public of a country the right to run the affairs of a country or rule on this earth, as is generally considered these days. According to Allah, this right rests only with those noble people who accept Allah as their Lord, believe His laws. It is however, a mans individual affair whether he believes or disbelieves in Allah and whether he follows His laws or not. If a man becomes so stupid as not to he will be in a loss, here as well as in the Hereafter Such people can only be convinced but not compelled as Islam disapproves of it. Nevertheless, Islam dose not allow anybody to prevent anybody from the Right Path and enforce his won laws is place of those of Allah.
The prophet of Allah comes to this earth to show the people the Right Path. Their mission includes to inform the people about Allahs will relive them from the clutches of man and make them subservient to Allah. Those who follow there prophets are Muslims. Those who do not accept what they say and worship other than Allah are called Kafir (infidels).
The prophets of Allah do not make Muslims forcibly Just think whether it is possible at all. How can a man become a Muslim unless he rally accepts Allah and his prophets. And nobodys heart can be changed or corrected. It is a mans own business to choose his course. The prophets of Allah, however, do not allow a few people to rule over others, prevent them from Allahs subservience and not allow them to adopt the Right Path. Allahs prophets wage war against such people and keep them subdued with all their might.
Allah had given Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) tremendous might with which he would destroy the power of the disbelievers No Kafir ruler around his Government ever dared to raise its head. Once he inspected all his army which included genii and bird besides the people. He found that the wood pecker was absent from there. He became angry and said, Where is wood pecker why is he absent without permission ? Produce him before me when he comes he will be punished severely for his absence. He will be slaughtered if he does not give a rational reason for his absence,
In the meantime, the wood-pecker was back. When presented before Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) and asked by him where he had been the wood-pecker said, Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) I have brought a news which was hitherto not ever in you knowledge. While flying, I reached a country which is called the country of Saba (Sheeba). It is ruled by a woman and she is the queen of that country. She has every thing including wealth, and a very grand throne, which is very big and costly. In spite of possessing all this, she and her people have forgotten God and worship the sun. Those people are victim of various evils. The satan has so distracted them they have presumed these evils as virtues and are regaling in their infidelity. The Satan has prevented them from the obedience of Allah. They do all things that displease Allah and are happy with that. There is none among them to show them the path of Allahs obedience and tell them that the sun does not deserve worship. No one is there to tell them that only He should be worshipped who sends rain from the skies, grows trees from beneath the earth which we cannot see before, He is All knowing, He is aware of everything, including what we hide. The fact is that the people of that country have gotten that only Allah deserves warship and everything I the world is His creation and that He is the Lord of this entire universe.
Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) replied: Now I want to verify whether what you say is true or wrong. Take this message and deliver it to the queen. Lets then see what she replies. In fact, he was very worried after learning that the people and the queen of a neighbouring country were engaged in worshipping the sun and the entire nation was distracted. Therefore, Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) decided to first convey the message of Deen to the queen of that country. He thought if she was convinced and adopted Islamic way by giving up kufr and shirk, associating others with Allah) her people would also follow her. They will also abandon worshipping the sun and worship only Allah.
Keeping all this in view, he wrote the letter to the queen of Saba, which read. This latter is from Suleman (A.S.). In the name of Allah, the beneficent, the merciful; The real Deen Is the obedience of Allah. Man has not been created to worship such things as the sun and The moon. He should worship such only Allah and this is our message also. Dont venture to fight against me in response to this message but the course of peace and security for you is to embrace Islam, accept Allah as your Lord and obey Him as He alone deserves Worship. He created man. If you agree with me, come over here as a Muslim.
The wood-pecker delivered the letter to the Queen of Saba; She was moved after reading it. She called her ministers and Sardars read out the letter to them and asked for their advice in this regard. As I do not do anything without consulting you. In this case also I want your opinion, she said. The Sardars became annoyed and said, we should not be subdued or fear. We have a big force and we are not going to retreat, We wait for only your command; we will also sacrifice our lives and have it cut with Suleman (A.S.) and his force. As soon as you order us, we will be ready for fighting.
The queen was a cool-mind and wise lady. After hearing the reaction of the Sardars, he said, It is true that when a king launches an attack on a country, all the people of that country are crushed and killed of no reason. The crops and orchards are destroyed. The respected people are abased and even the best of them are not spared. Therefore, the talk of war as a first step does no appear to be correct.
In my opinion, I should first send some costly gifts to Suleman (A.S.) and judge him whether he is a greedy wordly king or truly a prophet of Allah. The courtiers of gifts will also witness with their own eyes how that person is and how much force he has. It will improper to talk of war unless everything is known about him. Any step will be taken only after all the circumstances are known.
The queens argument was quite rational. The sardarwree silent and it was decided that some people take a few gifts to Hazrat Suleman (A.S.). Various costly gifts, including gold and silver, were packed. Besides, horses and servants also formed the gifts. When these people reached Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) along with the gifts, he said: I do not at all need all these things what Allah has given me is far has given me a lot of things. Keep your gifts with you and be happy. I do not need these. My message was different and only that should be given consideration to. It is totally wrong for a man to worship any other than Allah. I am Allahs prophet and have been sent to show His servants the Right Path. I have no other purpose. You people return to your queen and tell her that I do not need her wealth. I cannot tolerate that you too remain unaware of Allahs worship and lead other people also on the wrong path. It is my duty to liberate man from mans slavery and show them the Right Path. Tell your queen if she is not prepared obey Allah, we will bring our forces. They will not be able to face it. We will abase the disobedient to Allah and evacuate them from their habitations. Our mission is the show the Right Path to the people and not accumulate wealth,
When the queens men returned, they told her every thing about Hazrat Suleman (A.S.). The queen was convinced that he was not a wordly king but may be, he was a prophet of Allah. So, she decided to herself meet Hazrat Suleman (A.S.). Meanwhile, Allah sent him a revelation and informed him about it. Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) therefore, decided to perform a unique feat which should convince the queen that he was truly the prophet of Allah. Such a feat is called a mojaza, a mircle.
Knowing that the queens throne was very costly and grand, Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) wished its presence there before the arrival of the queen. He gathered all his courtiers and said, I want that the throne of the queen of Saba should be here before her arrival, tell me who of you can do that. A genii from amongst them replied, I can do this and the throne will be before you leave the court. I have the power to do this and I am honest also. Not a single part of the throne will be missing. A sahabi (companion) of Hazrat Suleman (A.S.), who was an honest servant of Allah and a special ma of him, meanwhile, intervened and said, Hazrat (A.S.), this is just a matter of a moment, the throne will be here. Just as sahabi completed his sentence the throne was present and Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) was very happy to see that. He declared: It is by the Grace of my Lord that the throne of the queen of Saba is in my court in a moment. No man can do this. All these feats and miracles are the gifts of Allah. Who is testing me by bestowing such benefits on me? Allah actually wants to ascertain whether I am thankful to Him or Not. I will be the greatest unthankful if I assume that all these feats are result of my strength. The real strength and power is that of Allah and this is because of His Grace alone. Everything is done by His will. One who thanks Allah is in advantage: He does not benefit Allah but his further benefited by Allah. But one who does not thank Him list in a disadvantage and does not accrue any bodys thanks, nor does He need anyones help or praise. He is Beneficent, the merciful.
This is instance of a momin. When a big feat is done by him, he does not claim any credit for that but acknowledges the Greatness of Allah and believes that He is All Powerful and everything is done His order. But a distracted man praises himself for any great feat performed by him and asserts his own greatness. He thinks that he has done that deed by his own power and wisdom and considers it the result of his own hardwork. This is the difference between a Muslim and Kafir. While a Muslim is thankful to Allah and has trust in His power and help, a Kafir has no help. When the throne of Sabas queen was placed before Hazrat Suleman (A.S.), he said Make some changes in it and change it shape slightly. Lets see whether the queen recognizes throne or not.
One day a messenger informed about the arrival of the queen. Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) called her to his place. As soon as she entered it, her eyes fell on the throne. When she was looking at it, Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) asked if her throne was also like that. The queen replied, It looks the same throne.
When the queen recognized her throne, Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) told her the entire story and informed her how it had come there in an instant by the Grace of God. The queen replied that such a miracle was no more necessary to convince her. We had already come to know about you, The queen said, we already knew that you are not a wordly king and that is why we were ready to follow you. However, our people, who have been worshipping others than Allah for a long time, could not be reformed immediately and that was a big hurdle.
Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) did not reply but took her to his palace. His palace was very well built, with its floor made of crystal glass. When the queen reached the courtyard of the palace, she thought that further ahead was deep water. She hesitated to move forward. She was scared to move forward. Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) said to her, Dont worry, it is the floor of crystal glass.
The queen was astonished to see the grandeur of the palace. She saw that on the one hand Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) had all the worldly wealth and such splendid palaces, on the other, he was good-mannered, good charactered and God fearing person. Anybody else in his place would have been proud of all this and totally in-different to others. The queen, however, was convinced that Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) was not an ordinary wordly king but really a prophet of Allah. The she announced before Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) to embrace Islam and said, O Lord, I have tortured myself by having worshipped the sun instead, of You and bowed my head before others. Now I, with Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) pledge to obey You and affirm that You alone is the Lord of the Universe, the Sustainer of all and none except You deserves worship and obedience.
The queen of Saba became Muslim and the objective of Hadrat Suleiman (A.S.) was thus achieved.
When Hadrat Suleiman (A.S.) was nearing his demise the genii were busy in constructing a building. Hadrat Suleiman (A.S.) had come to know about his death well in advance. He also knew that the genii will continue work on the buildings as long as he was alive but as soon as they came to knew that he was alive but as soon as they came to knew that he was no more, they would just stop the work. Hadrat Suleiman (A.S.) wanted to get the building completed. Therefore, he arranged it so that the genii did not come to know about his death and continued to believe him as alive. He therefore stood before the building under construction resting on his stick and the angle of death took out his soul in the same posture. The genii continued to believe that Hadrat Suleiman (A.S.) was standing resting on his stick and they went on working till and caught the stick, The body of Hadrat Suleiman (A.S.) fell down. The genii could this come to know about his death only after the building was completed. Secondly, the genii who earlier believed that they were aware of the future events were now convinced that only Allah knew about the future. If they were aware of future, they would not have been unaware of his death and would not have suffered the rigours of the construction work.
Some people feel that the genii and the Satans have knowledge about the future. They have been told by this incident that only Allah know about the future. Similarly, those who have faith in astrologers, astronomers, pandits and such other persons are distracted. These people only fire in the darkness. The should not believed.
Things to Remember
- To be rich is not bad but to spend wealth on luxuries is bad.
- The wealth is also a blessing of Allah, provided man does not forget Him after receiving it, helps the needy and the poor and spends Allahs wealth according to His will.
- The significance of wealth in the eyes of a momin is that he should spend it for Islam and to help the needy.
- It is the quality of a momin to thank Allah, for His bounties and not to consider any of his characteristics as his own but a blessing of Allah and thank Him for it.
- A momin believes that if he thanks Allah, his wealth will increase. It is not a Momins quality to forget Allah after receiving His bounties.
- All bounties of Allah are, In fact, for His obedient servants, here as well as in the Hereafter. However Allahs bounties in the world are for all, momins as well as the Kafir, as a test. But in the Hereafter only the obedient servants of Allah will be entitled for His bounties.
- Nobody can be forced to reconcile with Iman and Islam. Had it been so, Allah would have made everybody a Momin and nobody would dare disobey Him. Instead, Allah has set every man to liberty. Now it is mans choice between His obedience and disobedience.
- A momin also resorts to the use of force for Allah but he does so only when it become impossible to teach the people right things through preaching and when kufr becomes a hurdle in the way of Deen. Even such use of force is subject to certain conditions. This is not an ordinary mans job.
- None except Allah has knowledge of the concealed and even the prophets are ignorant about the future Although Allah had given Hazrat Suleman (A.S.) every authority and power on all His creation but he to lacked knowledge of the concealed. For instance, he had to search where the wood-pecker had disappeared.
- A momin always considers his feats. How so ever big they may be not as his own but a blessing of Allah. Contrary to it a rebel boasts of his successes and asserts, I have done this, I have done that, He considers his mind and strength as supreme and he attributes his successes to his own efforts.
- The genii and the satan are also ignorant of the concealed like man, None except Allah is aware of the future. The astrologers, pandits and astronomers only throw arrow in the dark. Belief in such things makes ones Iman falter