19 February 2014 CE | 17 Rabbi al-Thanni 1435 AH

Hadith Explanation

Discovery of a Shroud Thief

Once the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said to Abdullah ibn Umar (radi Allahu anhu): “O Ibn Umar, what will your condition be when you come upon a community who store a year’s provision for lack of reliance and trust (in Allah)?” [Minhaaj ul-Abideen by Imaam Ghazali]

The Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) is telling his Sahabi in this hadith that a time will come when there will be Muslims who do not have faith in Allah’s promise of provision. It would be hard on the Sahabah to see such people, how would they take it?

Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) says in the Quran, “Surely, Allah He it is that gives sustenance, the Lord of solid power.” [Surah Dhariyaat, Ayat 58]

A thief of shrouds repented from his sin at the hands of Bayazid Bustami (rehmatullah alaihi). When Bayazid asked the thief about the graves, he said: “I stole about 12,000 shrouds from graves but I found only two male faces facing the Qiblah.” Bayazid Bustami said that those who had no reliance on Allah in the matter of their livelihood had their faces turned away from the Qiblah. [Minhaaj ul-Abideen by Imaam Ghazali]

When Muslims are buried they are laid in their graves such that their faces face the Qiblah. However, if we believe that our jobs, employers, businesses, spouses, etc, are feeding us and it is not through the Will of Allah and the provision He has earmarked for us, then we do not see Him as Ar-Razzaq (The Provider). If we don’t look towards Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) in life, then we don’t deserve to have our faces look towards Him (face the Qiblah) in death and He orders the angels to turn our faces away.

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