Friday, December 15, 2006

Salvation? you never know what will bring it !

One of the most touching stories in early Arabic history relates the tale of the Sufi from Baghdad, Abu Bakr al-Shibli (d. 945) who dies and was seen by one of his friends in a dream. On being asked what God had done to him, he said that he had been granted admission to Paradise but was asked by the Lord if he knew the reason for this blessing.

Shibli enumerated all his religious duties, fasting and praying, performing the Pilgrimage and giving alms, but none of these acts of piety had saved him.

Finally the Lord asked him, "Do you remember the cold day in Baghdad when it was snowing and you were walking in your coat when you saw a tiny kitten on a wall shivering with cold, and you took it and put it under your warm coat? For the sake of this kitten We have forgiven you."

Excerpts from The Animal Lawsuits Against Humanity: A modern adaptation of an ancient animal rights tale by a 10th Century Muslim Iraqi, Ikhwan al-Safa (Rabbi Anson Layton). Hossein Nasr, Seyyed also has the work credited to him.

Thanks to dear dear friend Shelby for sharing this beautiful stroy on compassion for fellow creature. and its a good reminder for the believer, no matter on with faith we belong, that our being so called spiritual or religious is worthless against the infinite blessings and mercy of God that we are immersed in every moments. The Truth Realized ones regreted all their life that even if one keep praising God with every breath literally, even then our deeds are insufficient.

It is not our outward prayers, religious offerings (often overpowered and nullified by showiness) that counts; its the compassion for fellow creature which God holds dear to Him, to serve the humanity and the whole of creation is what matters the most. The salvation doesn't depend on believing merely on divinity of a man or others, but on being compassionate to the whole of creation, to serve, in whatever capacity we have.
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