Perfumed Souls

An acquaintance narrated to me that he was once in great need, his daughter had a heart condition, and needed immediate operation. The hospital informed him of the fees of the operation, which was a huge sum of money that he didn’t have. Without indulging into unnecessary details, this acquaintance had an old neighbor who depended in his livelihood on the rent of a piece of land he inherited from his father. This old neighbor considered my acquaintance a close friend, and treated him like a son. When he knew of the man’s distress, he went away for three days, and returned with the money. When my acquaintance asked his old neighbor from where he got the money, the man answered in a simple manner, “I sold my land.” My acquaintance pushed the money back to the old man saying, “This was all you had in this life. How will you sustain yourself now?” The old man refused to take the money back, and said, “You idiot, I have you in this life. All I can ask for, is that Allah keeps you and your family safe.”

Allah says in the Qur’an: “Remain steadfast with those who call upon their Lord, morning and evening, seeking His pleasure; and do not let your eyes swerve away from them, desiring the attractions of this worldly life; and do not obey one whose heart We have made heedless of Our remembrance, one who pursues his own whims and becomes dissolute.” [The Qur’an (18:28)]

Speaking about companionship, Prophet Muhammad P.B.U.H. said: “The example of a good companion, and a bad one, is like that of a perfume seller, and a blacksmith. From the first, you smell good odors, or your clothes catch the smell of his perfumes; and from the second, you smell bad odors, or his sparks burn holes through your clothes.” [Recorded by Bukhari and Muslim].

The aforementioned parable is just an example among millions we see in this life. This man gave what he had from the materialistic fortunes of this life, to preserve and maintain a spiritual relationship with his neighbor and friend. For him, nothing was more important than the human being he has come to know and love. One might wonder, did this man lose everything, or did he gain something that all the fortunes in this world can’t buy?
I say, this man and his likes are like perfumed souls spreading the odor of goodness wherever they reside. They never ask for anything in return, nor do they seek anything from the endless attractions of this life. Their main purpose is setting things right, and helping those who are weak, and cannot help themselves.

Your perfume is not that nice odor you add to your clothes, or body; it’s that scent you add to your soul from goodness, and piety. Seek the companionship of those who have that, then do your best to hold on to them no matter what. They are everlasting perfumed souls, whose perfume never fades or ends.

Written By: Ehab Shawky

In Response To: Perfume


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