Download PDF: [S] Teacher not Stretching his Hand for the Governor

This incident occurred about a hundred years ago.


Once, Sheikh Sa’eed Halbi was once sitting in a Masjid in Damascus teaching his students. It so happened that there was some problems with his legs on that one day so he had his legs outstretched in front of him to get some relief. It was also the habit for a teacher to sit with his back to the Qiblah and for the students to sit facing the Qiblah. Therefore, Shaikh Sa’eed Halbi was facing the door with his back was towards the Qiblah and his feet were across the opening of the door.


At that time, the son of Mohammed Pasha, whose name was Ebrahim Pasha, was considered as a very strict and severe Governor. Ebrahim Pasha decided on that day to meet the eminent Sheikh so he set out to travel to this Masjid. He also wanted to listen to some words of this lesson himself.


However, when he arrived at the entrance of the Masjid, the students present felt that no matter how much of pain or trouble the Sheikh had in his feet, they knew that their teacher would fold them because this well-known and strict Governor was standing at the entrance. However, the Sheikh did not move an inch and he did not even stop the lessons. He continued to sit in this position with his legs outstretched. The Governor continued to stand at the entrance while the Sheikh blocked the entrance with his feet.


The students report that they were terrified at what was happening. They felt that today their great Sheikh would surely be killed or be publicly humiliated. However, the Governor stood for a while listening to this lesson and the Sheikh continued speaking.


However, such was the effect of this lesson that the Governor did not say a word. He never uttered a single complaint and quietly left the Masjid. However, after he had left, he ordered one of his servants to go and deliver a bag of Ashrafi coins to the Shaikh. He also told them, “Go and deliver my Salaams to the Sheikh and inform him that this servant has sent this as a humble gesture!”


What did the Sheikh reply? The reply of the Sheikh is something which should be written in gold. He said, “Go and deliver my Salaams to the Governor and inform him that I had outstretched my legs and not my hands. Whether it is the legs or the hands, they indicate one thing and when I had outstretched my legs, I made a promise that I would never outstretch my hands.”


The historian has narrated it in these words.


(Pa ja Suraaghe Zindagi)