An Anecdote About Tawakkul II

Abu Ya'qub-i Basri says, "I suffered hunger for days in the blessed city of Mekka; I couldn't endure it any more, when I saw a turnip thrown out into the street. I wanted to take it. But some voice inside me seemed to say: 'You have been patient for ten days. And now you are going to eat that rotten turnip?' I gave up. I went into Masjid-i haram [1] and sat there. Someone came and put some newly fried bread, sugar and some almonds in front of me and said, 'I was out in the sea. A storm broke out and I vowed that I would give these to a poor man that I would run into if I should be rescued.' I took a handful of each and gave the rest to the man as a present. Realising that Allahu ta'ala created a storm in the sea in order to help me and then rescued the person for his vow and sent him to me, I thanked Allahu ta'ala. And I repented of having looked for sustenance on the streets." To consolidate iman it is necessary to read such rare incidents.

It is never permissible for such people not to work and sit idly in the name of tawakkul [2]. A person who thinks of himself has to think of getting what he needs by working, too. This means to say that Allah creates in everyone's heart mercy and compassion for a person who is on His way and is like an orphan. For this reason, a person's dying of hunger while being on the way of Allah has never happened. If a person sees and understands in what a great order and perfection the owner of all beings has created everything, he very easily sees the ayat [3], "There is not even one creature on earth whom Allahu ta'ala does not give food."

[1] masjid: mosque; al-Masjid al-Haram: the great mosque in Mekka; al-Masjid ash-sharif (as-Sa'ada, an-Nabi): the mosque in Medina, built in the time of the Prophet ('alaihi 's-salam) and later enlarged several times, in which his grave is.
[2] tawakkul: trusting in, expecting everything from Allahu ta'ala exclusively; expecting from Allahu ta'ala the effectiveness of the cause after working or holding on to the cause – before which tawakkul is unadvised. See Endless Bliss III, 35.
[3] ayat: A verse of al-Qur'an al-karim; al-ayat al-karima.