Monday, September 7, 2015

The Good, the Bald and the Ugly

The Good, the Bald and the Ugly
Dr. Mouhamed N. Tarazi
Based on a narration in Muslim & Bukhari

   Abas was a poor leper living by himself. He was ashamed of his looks and could not mingle with others in his village. He would have loved to get married but no women would marry him. He couldn’t get a job and was living off the charity offered to him by the village. One day an angel came to visit him in a form of a man.

   “Assalamu alaykum Brother Abas,” said the angel.

   “Waalykum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu,” replied Abas.

   “How’re you doing?” asked the angel.

   “Just fine. Who’re you? What do you need?” Abas asked with a frown.”

   “What is the one thing you would like most, Abas?” The angel asked.

   “Don’t you see me? I’m just an ugly man. I wish I had normal heathy good looking skin like you, so I could get out and mix with the people of my village, get a job, get married and have children. The way I am everybody hates me,” angrily replied the leper. 

The angel caressed him and suddenly, by the power of God, his illness was cured, and he was given beautiful healthy skin. Abas, stunned, became extremely happy and he did not expect what would come next.

The angel then asked him:

   “What kind of animal do you like best?”

   “Camels,” he replied with a smile.

So the angel gave him a pregnant she-camel, and prayed for him: May Allah bless you through it.”

The angel then left.

   Next the angel visited a bald man named Sammy. Sammy was depressed with his baldness. He tried all known recipes to get some hair back on his head but nothing worked.  The angel asked Sammy

   “Why don’t you make a wish?”

   “I wish I had a nice looking hair.”

The angel touched Sammy’s head and told him to feel his head. He was given nice curly brown hair. Then the angel asked Sammy about his favorite animal. Sammy liked cows. The angel offered him a pregnant cow and prayed that Allah blessed him through it.

   Finally, the angel visited Kareem, a blind man.

   “Assalamu alaykum Brother Kareem,” greeted the angel.

   “Waalykum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu,” welcomed Kareem.

   “How’re you doing today?” asked the angel.

   “Alhamdulillah!” replied Kareem with a smile.

Then the angel asked him what he would like the most in this world.

   “I wish that Allah would give me back my sight, so I can see and admire the beauty of the creations of God.”

The angel gently touched Kareem’s eyes and voilà, his sight came back to him.

Kareem stared weeping and kept on repeating Alhamdulillah! Alhamdulillah! Alhamdulillah!

   “What property do you like best?” asked the angel.


The angel gave him a pregnant sheep, prayed for him and departed.

   After a while the three pregnant animal gave birth to young ones, and they multiplied so much that soon Abas had a herd of camels filling a valley, Sammy had a herd of cows filling a valley, and Kareem had a flock of sheep filling a valley.

   The time for a trial had come. Disguised in the shape and look of the original miserable poor Abas the leper, the angel visited the new cured leper Abas. The angel-leper said:

   “I am a poor man, I lost everything while travelling.  In the Name of Him Who has given you such a nice color and beautiful skin, and so much property, I ask you to give me just one camel to help me reach my destination.”

   Abas repelled him, “I can’t afford that. I have a lot of obligations.”  

[Credit cards debts? House mortgage?  Cars payments? Private schools for children’s tuition. There are many reasons some people give to avoid donating.]

The angel said, “Wait a minute! I think I know you; were you not a leper people hated? Weren’t you a poor man and then Allah blessed you with all this property?”

   “Nonsense, this is not true. I inherited all of this from my powerful fore-fathers,” Abas replied.

The angel said,
    “If you are lying, May God return you as you were before.”  

And he left.

   Next the angel, disguised this time in the shape and appearance of a bald man, visited Sammy and said to him the same as he told Abas. Sammy, too, used the same excuses to avoid giving charity and helping the bald man.

The angel said,
“If you are telling a lie, may God return you bald as you were before.” 

   Disguised as blind man, the angel went to Kareem and said,

    “I am a poor man and a traveler, I lost all my means of livelihood during my journey. I have nobody to help me except God, and after Him, you yourself. I ask you in the Name of He Who has given you back your eye-sight to give me just one sheep. That would help me complete my journey and reach my destination.”

Kareem quickly replied, “Indeed, I was blind and God restored my eye-sight; and I was poor and God made me rich; so take anything you want from my property. For God’s sake, I will not stop you for taking anything you wish from my property.”

   “You are just a good man,” the angel replied, “keep your property with you. You have been tested and God is pleased with you.”


Be kind to others as Allah has been kind to you.

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