Wisdom of Hâtim al-Asamm
is related that one day Shaqîq al-Balkhi asked his student Hâtim al-Asamm,
“How long have you kept my company?”
years,” he replied.
what have you learned from me in all this time?”
things,” he said.
“We belong to Allâh and we return to him!” exclaimed
Shaqîq. “You have spent your whole life with me and only learned eight
things! What are they?”
replied Hâtim, “I looked at mankind and I saw that everyone loves something
and continues to do so. When he goes to his grave, whatever he loved leaves him.
Therefore I made my good actions what I love, for when I enter the grave they
will enter it along with me.”
have done well,” said Shaqîq. “What is the second?”
second is that I examined the words of the Almighty,
as for him who feared the Station of his Lord and forbade the self its
appetites, the Garden shall be his refuge.’
that the words of the Almighty are true, I strove against myself to keep my
appetites at bay until I was firm in Allâh Almighty.
third is that I looked at people and saw that everyone has something of
worth which they value and protect. Then I looked at the words of the Almighty,
is with you comes to an end. But what is with Allâh is everlasting.’
whenever something of value comes to me, I direct it to Allâh Almighty so that
it may remain with Him for me.
fourth is that I looked at Allâh’s creatures and saw that all of them
set much store by property, reputation, honour, and lineage. I examined those
things and found them to be nothing. Then I looked at the words of the Almighty,
noblest among you in Allâh’s sight is the most god-fearing of you.’
So I set much store by fear of Allâh so that I might be
noble in His sight.
The fifth is that I looked at people and I found
that some of them attacked others and some of them cursed others; and I realised
that the reason they did that was envy. Then I looked at the words of the
have meted out among them their livelihood in the life of this world.’
I abandoned envy and enmity towards creation, knowing that what is allotted to
me will and must reach me.
sixth is that I saw that people fought and were hostile to one another. I
looked for my true enemy and found it to be Shaytân and indeed Allâh Almighty
says, ‘Shaytan is an enemy to you, so
treat him as an enemy.’ (35:6) So I made him my enemy and loved everyone
seventh is that I looked at mankind and found them seeking excessive
wealth and abasing themselves because of it. I looked at the words of the
is no creature on the earth whose provision is not with Allâh alone.’
realised that I am one of those who are provided for and so I busied myself with
Allâh Almighty and abandoned everything else besides Him.
eighth is that I looked at people and I saw that they relied on different
things: one on his commerce, another on his profession, and yet another on his
health. Every creature was relying on another creature! I looked at the words of
whoever puts his trust in Allah, He is enough for him.’ (65:3)
I put my trust in Allâh Almighty.”