Salman Farisi [d. 654]

He was given the name “Salman” by the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him). He is also known as Salmani Pak (Salman, the Pure), Salman al-Khayr (Salman, the Good), Salman al-Hakim (the Wise) and Salman al-Muhammadi, due to his beautiful character, and the depth of his heart and spirit. Whenever he was asked about his lineage, he gave the following answer to demonstrate how he had become annihilated in Allah:

“I am Salman ibn Islam (Salman, the son of Islam)”

His determination to reach Allah and the Truth

Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) told the story of his determined search and efforts to find Allah, full of wisdom, to his student Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him).

“I lived in a village called Jiyye in Isfahan. My father was the religious leader of our village. I was his most beloved person in the world. Due to his extreme love for me he never let me part from him and kept me at home like a daughter. I had so much given myself to my father’s religion, Zoroastrianism (Fire worship) that I had taken up the duty of looking after the fire. I would not allow it to go out for even a second…

One day my father sent me to our farm as he had to take care of some other matter. I came across a Christian church on the way. I watched what they were doing curiously and said to myself: “By Allah, this religion is better than ours”. I stayed there until the sun went down. I did not go to the farm and asked them: “Where is the origin of this religion?” They told me it was in Damascus.

When my father learned what happened, he chained my feet for fear that I would escape and imprisoned me in the house. I sent word to the Christians in the church: “Let me know when a trade caravan arrives from Syria”. Eventually I went to Syria with the Christian merchants. I asked about who the most learned of their religious men was and immediately went to him and said:

“I wish to enter this religion. I want to stay with you and serve in this church and worship with you”. I then began to stay in the church.

The Bishop of Damascus was an evil and greedy man. He would command the Christians to give charity and then take the money for himself and not give anything to the poor. He had thus saved up seven urns of gold and silver. I began to spite him as I saw what he was doing. Eventually he died. I said to the Christians:

“He was an evil man. He commanded you to give charity but kept what you gave for himself and did not give anything to the poor”. I then showed them his treasure. They said:

“By Allah we will not bury him”. They then hung his corpse and stoned it. They brought another man of religion to replace him. I never saw anybody in that community more virtuous, more indifferent to the world, more in desire of the hereafter, or who worshipped day and night more than he did. When he was on his deathbed I said to him:

“O precious man of religion! I have stayed with you and have never loved anyone as much as I love you. As you see, Allah’s command has come to pass. What do you advise me to do and to whom do you advise me to go?”

“My child! I do not know of anyone here who follows my way. The righteous people have all passed away. Those who are living have changed the original rulings of the religion and have abandoned most of them. However there is a man in Mosul. He is upon my way. Go to him”.

When this respected man passed away, I went to his friend in Mosul and when he passed away I went to Nusaybin upon his advice, and then to a man in Ammuria (a place close to Eskisehir). I purchased an amount of cattle in Ammuria. Eventually the command of Allah also came to that man of religion and he said to me:

“My child! By Allah! I know of none on earth who I can advise you to go to. However the time is near when the End of Time prophet will appear and his shadow is over us. That prophet will be sent upon the religion of Ibrahim (peace be upon him). He will appear in the land of the Arabs, and will migrate to a land of two black stony tracts amongst date gardens. He will accept a gift, but does not accept charity. He has a seal of prophethood between his two shoulder blades. If you have the strength to go to those lands, then set out immediately”.

Sometime later I came across some merchants from the tribe of Kalb and I said to them:

“Take me to the land of the Arabs and I will give you my cattle that you see here”. They accepted but when we got to the Wadi al-Qura they betrayed me and sold me to a Jew.

When I saw the date trees there I became hopeful that this was the land to which the End of time prophet would migrate to but I could not be certain. Then the cousin of my master from the Sons of Qurayza came and bought me and took to Madina. By Allah as soon as I saw Madina, I knew that this was the land of migration…

One day I was up in a date tree and my master was sitting in its shade. At that point his cousin came and said:

“May Allah damn the tribes of Aws and Khazraj!  By Allah they are now gathered together in the village of Quba at the head of a man from Mecca who claims to be a prophet”.

As soon as I heard this I began to tremble and I almost fell upon my master’s head:

“What did you say? What did you say?” I asked as I came down from the tree. My master became angry and slapped me harshly, saying:

“What concern is it of yours? Look to your work”.

When the evening came I took some food that I had saved up and went to Quba to the Messenger of Allah and said:

“I have heard that you are a righteous man and that you have needy and lonely Companions. I have brought some food with me as charity. When I heard about you I felt that you were more deserving of it”. I then presented the food to him. The Messenger of Allah said to his Companions:

“Take this and eat it”. But he did not eat himself. I said to myself: “This is one”.

I then returned to where I was and gathered up some more food. At that point Allah’s Messenger had arrived in Madina. I went to him and said:

“I saw that you did not eat from the charity that I gave. This is a gift that I have prepared for you”. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) then ate and told his Companions to eat also. I said to myself: “This is two”.

One day the Messenger of Allah had come to Jannat al-Baqi for a funeral and was sitting amongst his Companions. He had two items of ihram which wrapped his entire body. I entered his presence and greeted him. I then walked behind him in the hope that I would see his seal of prophethood. Allah’s Messenger understood my intention and he lowered his rida from his back. As soon as I saw the seal I recognised it and kissed it and began to weep. The prophet said to me:

“Turn around”. I went and stood in front of him and told him everything that had happened to me. The Messenger of Allah was very pleased that his Companions also heard my story…” (Ahmad, V, 441-444; Ibn Hisham, I, 233-242; Ibn Sa’d,  IV, 75-80).

The prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “A person shall be with the one he loves” (Bukhari, Adab, 96). Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) endured much hardship and pain but eventually was united with the beloved that he had been seeking his entire life. His only desire now was to remain with the Beloved of Allah and act according to His commands. Seeing this eagerness and loyalty, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

 “Salman! Can you not make an agreement with your master so that you can be freed from slavery?”

Salman then made an agreement with his master to dig and plant three hundred date saplings and pay him forty uqiyya[1] of gold. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) told his Companions:

Help your brother”.

Some Companions helped him with ten, some with five, and some with twenty, according to their means. Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

“O Salman! After you have dug the holes for the date saplings, let me know and I want to plant them with my own hands”.

Salman later said:

“…Not even one of those saplings failed to grow. Every one of them gave fruit at the right year and its fruit was eaten”.

During that time a chicken’s egg worth of gold was brought to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) from one of the mines. He wiped his blessed tongue over it and said:

“Take this. Almighty Allah will pay your debt with this”.

I took the gold and weighed it bit by bit giving it to my debtee. I swear by Allah that I weighed exactly forty uqiyya of gold from that small nugget. It was so fruitful that had I have weighed the mountain of Uhud with it, it would have been heavier”.

Salman was now free to be by the prophet’s side always, to take part in the Battle of Handaq and all other battles[2].

In another narration it is said that Abu Bakr bought and set Salman (may Allah be pleased with them both) free under the order of the prophet (peace and blessings be upon him)[3]. Since  he was freed from slavery with the help of the prophet he was also called ‘mawla an-nabi’, i.e. the prophet’s freed slave.[4]

From then on Salman never parted from the prophet, day and night and he became one of the Ashab-i Suffa.

Salman was very pure by nature and had a very clean heart. He was mutawakkil, which means that he had great trust in Allah. He so wished to be in the land of the Prophet when the light of guidance would rise there, he did not care about the price he had to pay, and endured great hardship to this end.

His story is full of wisdom for us and is a living example of seeking Allah and the truth and the sacrifices made in this way and the enthusiasm of living one’s faith with passion. If much we love the prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) in this world and are one with him in his state and actions, then we will also be close to him on that difficult Day of Judgement, by the will of Allah.

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrates:

We were once sitting with the Messenger of Allah when the chapter Jumu’a was revealed. The following verse was revealed:

“…And others of them who have not yet joined them. He is the Almighty, the All-Wise’ (Jumu’a, 62:3).

I asked the prophet:

“Who are people to whom this verse refers to, o Messenger of Allah?” He did not answer me until I repeated my question three times. Salman Farisi was also with us. The Messenger of Allah placed his blessed hand on the back of Salman and said:

 “If faith was to be found near the Pleiades, then some brave men from the nation of this man would reach it” (Bukhari, Tafsir, 62/1; Muslim, Fadail al-Sahaba, 231).

 

He was considered to be of the ahl al bayt

The sacrifices that Salman made in the way of Allah, the love he felt for the prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and his devotion to his Sunnah were a means for him to be considered from the ahl al-bayt. With his every state and in particular his selfless efforts in the way of Allah, Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) was such a beautiful example that the Ansar and the Muhajiruns both made claims to him saying:

“Salman is from us”.

In an attempt to conciliate them and as a compliment to Salman, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

سَلْمَانُ مِنَّا أَهْلَ الْبَيْتِ

“Salman is from us. He is a member of my family (ahl al bayt)”[5].

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) also said:

“Take care and know that my friends are not from my father’s family. My true friends are Allah, Most High, and the righteous believers.” (Muslim, Iman, 366; Bukhari, Adab, 14).

“Undoubtedly my true friends are the people of taqwa. (Abu Dawud, Fitan, 1/4242).

The rank of Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) in the eyes of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) was very different. Whenever the Companions wished to ask the prophet something they would use Salman as an intermediary for he knew very well how to speak to the Messenger of Allah.

Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) narrates:

“On some nights Salman Farisi would be alone with the Messenger of Allah. He was with the Messenger of Allah almost more than we were” (Ibn Abdi Barr, al-Istiab, II, 636; Ibn al-Asir Usdu al-Ghaba, II, 510).

Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) narrates:

“One time when I was ill, the Messenger of Allah came to visit me. When he left he said:

ياَ سَلْمَانُ! كَشَفَ اللّٰهُ ضُرَّكَ وَغَفَرَ ذَنْبَكَ

وَعَافَاكَ ف۪ى دِينِكَ وَجَسَدِكَ اِلٰى اَجَلِكَ

“O Salman! May Allah cure your illness and forgive your sins.  And may He give strength to your religion and health to your body until you die” (Haysami, II, 299).

Salman-i Pak never ever received charity[6] nor did he accept anything from anyone.[7]

When Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) established the state organisations of that time, he assigned the same amount of money to Salman as he did to Hasan and Hussain (may Allah be pleased with them) as he accepted him as being from the ahl al bayt[8]. However, Salman, who possessed an ascetic heart, gave this away in charity and preferred to earn his livelihood making and selling straw baskets that he made from palm fibres.[9]

 

His virtues

Salman-i Pak (may Allah be pleased with him) was a scholar and an ascetic who gave no importance to this world, who stayed away from luxury and extravagance, who was modest and humble and of good character. He was an extremely intelligent, brave and selfless Companion. He had a unique closeness to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) and was one of the Companions who gave fatwa during the prophet’s lifetime. He spent his entire life in search of Islam and occupied himself with teaching it to others. He is the first Persian to have become Muslim[10].

One day the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

“Allah, Most High, commanded me to love four people and told me that He also loved them”. He then mentioned the names of Ali (may Allah be pleased with him), Abu Dharr (may Allah be pleased with him), Miqdad (may Allah be pleased with him) and Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) (Tirmidhi, Manaqib, 20/3718).

Another time he (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

“Paradise longs for these three people: Ali, Ammar and Salman” (Tirmidhi, Manaqib 34/3797).

The Blessed Companions would go to Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) and ask him to pray for them.

The oppressed would go to him and tell him of their complaints[11].

He was also a scholar whose knowledge it was advised to learn from[12].

One time a man went to the house of Salman and was surprised when he found nothing but a sword and a Qur’an. Salman told him that he had spent all of his wealth in order to arrive safely to the destination that lay before him, the hereafter, which was extremely difficult to reach and whose journey was filled with hardship.

Because Salman had shaved the head of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) he was known as the patron saint of barbers and was called Salman-i Pak.

 

His connection to Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) and Qasim ibn Muhammad (May Allah have mercy on him)

After the death of the prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) Salman neither left Madina nor the company of Abu Bakr. He had a very close relationship with Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with them both). He learned much from him. He reached a very high rank in the inner and outer sciences.

Meanwhile he was also teaching his own important students. Amongst his own students were many important Companions such as Abu Said al-Khudri, Ibn Abbas and Aws ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with them). Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) also narrated some hadith from him. Qasim ibn Muhammad, the great Tabii’een scholar who was known as one of the Fuqaha Sab’a, the seven great scholars of Madina, was also one of his students. He developed and matured from his lessons and spiritual talks.

Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) was at the fore ranks of the army that fought the Ridda Wars (Wars of Apostasy) and fought as a leading force[13].

Salman visited Abu Bakr in the final illness that led to his demise and said:

“Give me some advice”. Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) began by saying:

“Allah will spread out at your feet the bounties of this world. Take only what you need from them…” He then continued to advise him[14].

Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) took part in the conquest of Iran that took place during the caliphate of Umar (may Allah be pleased with him). Since he was Persian himself, he went ahead of the army to invite the Persians to Islam and taught them the religion of Allah. During the most intense time of the battle, he made speeches that increased the morale of the army and reminded them of the hereafter. He greatly benefitted the army with his general knowledge and his experience of the customs of the Persians.

From time to time he acted as commander over the soldiers. Before attacking the fortresses that they had sieged he gave them time and, as he had learned from the prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), he first invited them to Islam and addressed them in Persian as follows:

“I am a Persian just like you. As you can see, the Arabs are under my command and they obey me. If you become Muslim, you will gain the same rights as us; and your responsibilities will be the same as ours.  If you wish to remain devoted to your religion, we will set you free as long as you agree to pay the jizya tax…”[15]

 

His worship

One day Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) was amongst a group of people who were remembering Allah. At that point the Messenger of Allah passed by and when he saw them he turned towards them. When he came near them the Companions fell silent out of their respect for him. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) asked them:

 “What were you talking about? I saw the mercy that was sent down upon you and I wanted to share in it with you” (Hakim, I, 210/419).

When the darkness of the night fell, Salman would begin to perform the prayer. When he felt tired from praying he would perform dhikr of Allah with his tongue. When he tired of this, he would reflect upon Allah’s existence, the proofs of His unity and His greatness. Sometime later he would say to himself:

“You have rested enough, now rise and pray”. After praying for a certain amount of time he would say to his tongue:

“You have rested enough, now remember Allah”.

A major part of the night would pass in this way[16].

All of the Companions, and in particular Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) admired the passion, excitement and deep reverence of Salman’s servitude to Allah.

 

His humility

Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) was a sincere, modest and easy-going friend of Allah. He was never a burden on anyone. He was extremely humble.

When the Iranian city of Madain was conquered, Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) appointed Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) as its governor. Salman behaved with the greatest justice and civility towards the people and as a result he was greatly loved and respected by them.

With his valuable words and wise advice, and his beautiful state and model lifestyle, he spread the teachings of Islam in his homeland and amongst his own people. As a result of his knowledge, his virtue, his beautiful character and superior efforts, Islam rapidly spread throughout that land.

When Salman was the governor of Madain, a person from the tribe of Bani Taym from Syria arrived and brought with him a load of figs. Salman was wearing a simple dress and cloak. The Syrian did not recognise him and when he saw him in this state he said:

“Come and carry this”. Salman went and put the load on his back. When the people saw him they recognised him and said to the man:

“The man that is carrying your load is the governor” The Syrian immediately apologised:

“I’m sorry I did not recognise you”. However Salman responded:

“No harm done. I will not leave this load until I take it to wherever you are going.[17]

When he put the load down he advised its owner as follows:

“Never belittle anyone after this”[18].

One day a man was boasting about himself whilst in Salman’s presence. Salman spoke:

“As for me, I was created from a vile and unpleasant fluid. After I die my body will become a rotting smelly carcass.  And then I will come to the Balance which weighs one’s deeds. If my good deeds weigh heavier, only then will I become a noble and valuable person; otherwise if they are light, then I will be the worst of the worst”[19].

One time a person saw Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) kneading dough. He was shocked and asked him:

“Where is your servant?” Salman replied:

“I sent him on an errand and I did not see fit to give him two tasks to do. It would not have been right to send him to do one task and not do his chore here. That would be unjust”[20].

He would not spend anything when he received his wage. Instead he would earn his livelihood through his own handiwork. He would buy date leaves for one dirham, and weave them into baskets and sell them for three dirhams. He would give one of these dirhams to the place where he bought the date leaves, give out one dirham in charity and spend the other dirham on the needs of his family[21].

After earning an amount of money he would buy meat or fish and prepare the table and invite lepers to eat from it and he would eat with them[22].

His foresight

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) had made Salman and Abu Darda (may Allah be pleased with them both) brothers.

One day Salman and his brother Abu Darda were eating from the same plate when the plate and the food it contained began to glorify Allah[23].

During another of these visits Salman saw the wife of Abu Darda (may Allah be pleased with him) wearing a very old dress and asked her:

“What is this state?” The woman replied:

“Your brother Abu Darda gives no importance to worldly things or pleasures”. At that point Abu Darda offered the meal that he had prepared to Salman saying:

“Come, eat. I am fasting”.

“I will not eat unless you eat”.

Abu Darda then sat down to eat. When it was night time Abu Darda prepared to perform the tahajjud prayer. Salman said to him:

“Sleep”. Abu Darda went to sleep. A little while later he tried to wake up again but Salman again said to him:

“Sleep”. Towards the end of the night Salman said to him:

“Now wake up” and together they rose and glorified Allah and prayed together. Then Salman said to Abu Darda:

 “Your Lord has rights over you, your nafs has rights over you and your family have rights over you. Give each their right”.

Abu Darda then went to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) and told him what had happened. The prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

“Salman has spoken correctly” (Bukhari, Sawm 51, Adab 86).

In another narration, Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) said to Abu Darda:

“Salman is more knowledgeable than you.”(Haysami, III, 199-200; Hani, Hadaik, p. 297).

 

Salman was very careful to abide by the rights of his brothers in religion. He even walked all the way from Madain, where he was governor to Damascus to visit his brother Abu Darda (may Allah be pleased with them both)[24].

Salman was very cultured and knowledgeable due to him having lived in many different lands. In addition to Persian and Arabic, he also knew Greek and Hebrew.

He suggested the digging of the trench at the Battle of Khandaq, and the use of the catapult and dabbaba[25] during the siege of Taif, which he  built himself[26].

His taqwa

Two men once greeted Salman and asked him:

“Are you not a Companion of the Messenger of Allah?”  He replied:

“I do not know”. The men were then left in doubt as to whether they had come to the wrong person. Salman explained:

“I saw the Messenger of Allah. I was in his gatherings. However the true Companion (Sahabi) is the one who enters Paradise with him” [27].

Abu Darda (may Allah be pleased with him) once sent a letter to Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) which stated: “Let him come to the holy land”. Salman wrote back to him as follows:

“It is not land that makes a person holy. What makes a person holy are his deeds. I have heard that you have become a physician and are healing people (that is, you have become a judge and are solving people’s problems and making rulings). Happy are you if you can make a correct judgement and find a solution to a person’s problem. However if you pretend to be a physician and are acting as a judge even though you are not competent to do so, then beware of making an incorrect ruling and spiritually killing a person, thereby entering Hell”.

After that whenever Abu Darda was to make a judgement between two people, he would look after them as they left and say:

“Come back and present your case to me once more. Let there be no misunderstanding. By Allah I fear making a wrong judgement and being a bad judge”[28].

In another letter Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) advised his brother as follows:

“Goodness (khayr) does not come from abundant wealth or children. True goodness is an increase in gentleness and your knowledge benefitting you. One’s place does not earn reward for a person. Worship Allah as if you see Him and consider yourself amongst the dead (That is, prepare well for death before you die)”[29].

His death

When the death of Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) was near, he said to his wife:

“Bring me the pouch of musk that I had given to you previously. Mix it with a little water and sprinkle it around me. I will be receiving some visitors in a little while. They do not eat or drink but they love beautiful fragrances.” (He was indicating the angels)

His wife complied with his request and left the room. When she heard a sound and returned she saw that Salman Farisi had passed away. May Allah be pleased with him” [30].

 

He passed away in Madain as a martyr in the 34 or 36th year after the hijra which corresponds to the year 654 or 656.[31]

 

Salman (may Allah be pleased with him) lived a long life. When he passed away he left behind no more than three or four items which valued around 25 or 30 dirhams[32].

His tomb,, which was repaired by Sultan Murad IV, can be found in the town of Salman Pak, near Baghdad[33]

 

His words of wisdom

  • “When night falls people fall into three categories: Those who do what is good for them, and who do not do what is not good for them; those who do what is not good for them, and who do not do what is good for them; and those who do neither what is good nor bad for them, but rather do nothing”.

That is, some people take the opportunity of the darkness of the night and the heedlessness of others, and benefit from it, by waking and taking their ablutions, and praying and bringing life to their night by doing good deeds. These are those who do what is good for them and who abandon what is bad for them.

There are others who take advantage of the darkness of the night and other people’s heedlessness to perform acts that Allah has forbidden. They waste their night by submitting to the carnal desires of their nafs. These are those who do what is bad for them and who abandon what is good for them.

And then there are those who sleep until the morning and spend the evening in heedlessness. They end up not having what is good or bad for them[34].

  • “The state of a believer in this world is like a patient in front of his doctor. The doctor knows his illness and his medicine. When the patient asks for something harmful, the doctor prevents him from taking it and says:

“Take care and do not even approach that. If you take it will destroy you”. He keeps him away from all harmful things until he is cured of his illness and his pains are relieved.

The believer is like this too. He desires to be given many worldly goods that have been given to others. However, Allah, Most High, distances him from his carnal desires and takes him in this state and places him in Paradise[35].

The believers in Mecca were being oppressed and suffering greatly. They looked at the pagans who were trading with various countries and earning great profit and said:

“These unbelievers are travelling about freely throughout the land, whereas we are subject to great deprivation in our efforts to be servants of Allah. The following verse was then revealed:

 ‘Do not be deceived by the fact that those who are unbelievers move freely about the earth. A brief enjoyment; then their shelter will be Hell. What an evil resting-place!’ (Al’i Imran, 3:196-197)[36].

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

“This world in relation to the hereafter is as when one of you dips his finger into the ocean. Let him look and see how much water remains on his finger.” (Muslim, Jannah, 55)

The hardships and difficulties that the believer encounters in this world and bears with patience and contentment are a requirement of divine trial. Using these as a means, Almighty Allah may forgive His servants’ sins or raise them in spiritual rank. Consequently it is the art of a perfected and mature heart to meet with patience and contentment the difficulties and trials that one faces…”

  • “If you are able, make sure that you are not the first person to enter the market nor the last person to leave! Those places are Satan’s battlefield and where he stakes his flag”[37].
  • “If you have committed a sin in secret, then obey Him in secret and ask for forgiveness in secret. If you have openly committed a sin, then obey Him openly and ask for forgiveness openly so that they can wipe each other out”[38].
  • “Three things made me laugh and three things made me cry. I laughed at the following three things:
  1. People are filled with hope about the world; yet death is in pursuit of them.
  2. People live in heedlessness; yet they are not unheeded and their every state is recorded. The angels are identifying them at every instant.
  3. Some people laugh out loud. Yet they do not know whether they are incurring the wrath of Allah with their heedlessness or whether they are pleasing Him.

One time the Messenger of Allah approached a group of people who were laughing. He said to them: “Are you laughing while the Book that mentions Paradise and Hell is amongst you?” After that nobody ever saw any of the people in that gathering ever laugh again until they passed away (Haysami, X, 307)].

The following three things made me cry:

  1. Parting from the Messenger of Allah and such special friends as the blessed Companions, and being distant from their spirituality;
  2. The terrifying events that will take place at the moment of death;
  3. Appearing before the Lord of the Worlds, not knowing whether I will be going to Heaven or Hell.” [39]

 

The Messenger of Alah (peace and blessings be upon him) commanded us to remember death much, death which uproots the pleasures and desires of the nafs[40]. On the Day of Judgement Almighty Allah will command everyone to read their own book of deeds and say: “‘Read your Book! Today your own self is reckoner enough against you!’ [41] On that Day in the Divine Court, hands, feet, skin, eyes, ears and the earth will speak and the cassette that we recorded whilst on earth will be played back to us.

  • “Knowledge is a deep ocean but life is short. Take (firstly) as much knowledge as you need for your religion…”[42].
  • “Be humble for the sake of Allah. For on the Day of Judgement Allah will raise in importance the one who was humble for Him in this world[43].
  • “The livelihood of the ascetic (zahid) is worship”.
  • “Salat is like a scale (a measure of how close a believer is to Allah). Whoever gives it full measure will be given their reward in its entirety and everyone knows about the threat that Allah directs towards those stinters who hand over less than is due”[44].

 

The verse that Salman is referring to here is:

 Woe to the stinters! Those who, when they take a measure from people, exact full measure, but when they give them a measure or weight, hand over less than is due. Do such people not realise that they will be raised up on a Terrible Day, the Day mankind will stand before the Lord of all the worlds?’ (Mutaffifin, 83:1-6).

  • “The Bridge of Sirat will be set up. Seeing how fine and razor-sharp it is, the angels will say:

“O Lord. Who will you make to pass along this?” Allah will reply:

“Only those who I wish will pass by it”[45].

  • “This community will be destroyed on account of their breaking their promise”[46].
  • “On the Day of Judgement those who will have incurred the most sins are those who get carried away by talk that Allah prohibited”[47].
  • “One person entered Paradise because of a fly and another went to Hell because of a mere fly”.

Two people from past nations once encountered an idol-worshipping people. These people would make whoever came to them sacrifice something to their idols.

They said to one of them who came:

“Sacrifice something” He replied:

“I have nothing with me to sacrifice”.

They said:

“Even if it be a fly, sacrifice it”. He then killed a fly and sacrificed it to their idols and as a result earned Hellfire. They said to the other:

“Sacrifice something”. He replied:

“I do not sacrifice anything to other than Allah”. They martyred him and he went to Paradise”[48].

  • One time Salman was looking for a clean place to pray. A wise woman said to him:

“First clean your heart and then you can pray wherever you like” Salman liked these words and said to the woman:

“You have spoken wisely”[49].

[1]. 1 uqiyya corresponded to approximately 128g.  .

[2]. See Ahmad, V, 443-444; Ibn Asir, Usdu al Ghaba, II, 419; Ibn Abdilber, II, 634-638; Ayni, Umda, XIII, 116.

[3]. Hakim, III, 692/6543; Bayhaqi, Dalail, II, 91.

[4]. Hakim, III, 691/6539; Mizzi, Tahzibu al Kamal, XI, 247.

[5]. Hakim, III, 691/6541; Haythami, VI, 130; Ibn Hisham, III, 241; Ibn Sa‘d, IV, 83.

[6]. Ibn Jawzii, Sifatu as Safwa, I, 541; Sharani, Tabakatu al Qubra, Beirut, undated., I, 23; Hani, Hadaiq, p. 295.

[7]. Ibn Abdi’l Bar, al Istiab, II, 635.

[8]. Tabari, Tarih, III, 614; Ibn Asir al Kamil, II, 331-332.

[9]. See Ibrahim Hatiboglu, “Selman al Farisi” article, DIA, XXXVI, 442.

[10]. Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 185.

[11]. Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 201.

[12]. Hakim, III, 304/5183.

[13]. Sabir Abduh Ibrahim, Salman al Farisi, Baghdad, undated. p 35.

[14]. Bayhaqi, Shuab, VII, 365; Ibn Sa‘d, III, 193.

[15]. Tirmidhi, Siyer, 1/1548.

[16]. Hani, Hadaiq, p 294.

[17]. Ibn Sa‘d, IV, 88.

[18]. Ibn Asakir, XXI, 433; Dhahabi, Siyer, I, 546.

[19]. Hani, Hadaiq, p. 295.

[20]. Mamer bin Rashid, Jami, X, 393/19464.

[21]. Ibn Sa‘d, IV, 89; Hani, Hadaiq, p. 295.

[22]. Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 200.

[23]. Bayhaqi, Dalail, VI, 63; Ibnu Imad, Shazaratu al Dhahab, I, 209-210.

[24]. Bukhari, al Adabu al Mufrad, p. 127, no: 346.

[25]. Dabbaba: This was a war tool used to carve into the wall of an enemy fortress in order to move in under the soldiers and be saved from their arrows. It would be covered with animal skin. It can be considered to be the first tank.

[26]. Bayhaqi, Dalail, V, 161; Ibn Kathir, al-Bidaya, IV, 348; Waqidi, II, 445-447.

[27]. Haythami, VIII, 40-41; Dhahabi, Siyer, I, 549.

[28]. Muwatta’, Wasiya, 7.

[29]. Ibn Asir, Usdu al Ghaba, II, 510.

[30]. See Ibn Sa‘d, IV, 92; Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 207.

[31]. Hani, Hadaiq, p. 298; Muslim, Imara, 165.

[32]. Ahmad, V, 438; Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 197.

[33]. Ibrahim Hatiboğlu, “Selman Farisi” article, DIA, XXXVI, 442.

[34]. Ibn Asakir, XXI, 446; Dhahabi, Siyer, I, 549-550.

[35]. Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 206.

[36]. See Wahidi, Asbabu an Nuzul, p. 143; Râzî, Mafatihu al Ghayb, IX, 132.

[37]. Muslim, Fadaiul as Sahaba, 100.

[38]. Hani, Hadaiq, p. 298.

[39]. Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 207.

[40]. See Tirmidhi, Zuhd, 4; Nasai, Janaiz, 3.

[41] Isra, 17:14.

[42]. Ebu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 189.

[43]. Ibn Abi Shayba, Musannaf, VII, 120/34663.

[44]. Abdurrazaq, Musannaf, II, 372/3750.

[45]. Ibn Abi Shayba, Musannaf, VII, 59/34195.

[46]. Ibn Abi Shayba, Musannaf, VII, 543/37817.

[47]. Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 202.

[48]. Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 203.

[49]. Abu Nuaym, Hilya, I, 206.