Lowering the gaze This is the narration of the story of one of the Companions of the Prophet SallalahuAlayhiWa Salaam, Tha’alabaAbdurRahman, who was about 16 years old. He used to always run errands for the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him).
This is a narration about an amazing example of “Lowering the Gaze”
One day the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), sent his young companion to run an errand and he was walking through the city of Medinah and he passed by a house with an open door, he glanced towards the door and he saw a curtain that they used to use to cover a shower area...
At that moment the wind blew open the curtain and he glanced at a Muslim lady bathing...
He somehow glanced for a bit too long towards the bathing lady...
All of a sudden he came to his senses and he was overcome by intense feelings of guilt and hypocrisy...
He said to himself: “ AoudhuBillahi”, and he carried on “ how can I be one of the Companions of the prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), one that runs the Prophet’s errands and be so horrible and disrespectful of the lady’s privacy and the privacy of a Muslim. Surely Allah will send down an ayaat and mention me with the hypocrites.”
So due to his fear to be shown as a hypocrite to the Prophet (sallahuAlayhuWa salaam), he decided to run away.
The prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) waited for him for hours, and for days. As the days went by the prophet kept on asking if anybody had seen his young companion. He then (peace and blessings be upon him) sent Umar (ra) to look for him in the streets of Madinah.
When Umar (RA) came back he said to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him): “ O Prophet, we looked everywhere for him, in the streets, in the markets and the meadows and none of us could find him. Perhaps he will come back.”
So the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) waited. Then he (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “ O! Umar, go and look for him in the outskirts of Madinah”. So they went.
Eventually they reached some mountains between Makkah and Madinah where they saw a shepherd looking after a herd of goats. The man saw that they were looking for something so he asked them what they were looking for. So they told him that they were looking for the boy, giving him his description.
The goat shepherd then said: “ Perhaps you are looking for the young man who is always crying...” They said “ well we do not know but we are looking for such and such boy, but tell us about the boy you mentioned.”
“ Well on the other side of the mountain” said the shepherd,” there is a young man. In 40 days we have heard nothing else, but him crying. He comes down to us from the mountain every sunset, when we give him a little milk to drink, which he drinks while his tears flow mixing with it.”
So the Companions said: “ Can we see him?” The shepherd replied that they could see him if they were willing to wait until sunset. So the Companions waitedin hiding..,
Eventually they saw the young Companion appearing , sad with tears flowing down his face. He had lost a lot of weight and when he tried to drink his milk he could not swallow due to his crying. As he eventually managed to drink his milk and turned to return to the mountain, Umar (ra) and his Companions appeared.
The young companion got very scared when he saw them and he asked? “ What do you want of me?” They said: “ The prophet (saw) wants to see you. He then asked them very frightened: “ Has Allah revealed an ayaat, naming me among the hypocrites?” They replied that they did not know but that he needed to return to see the prophet (saw).
The young Companion begged them to leave him to die in the mountains but after a lot of struggle they managed to take him back to Madinah . The young Tha’alaba was crying more that ever on his return to his home. The Companions informed the prophet of his return and the prophet (pbuh) visited Tha’alaba at his home.
When young Tha’alaba saw the prophet ( saw) started crying and asked the prophet if an ayaat had been revealed about him and if he was mentioned amongst the hypocrites. The prophet ( pbuh)replied in the negative and took the crying boy’s head and rested it on his thigh. Tha’alaba then said: “ O! Prophet of Allah, remove a head that is full of sins and transgression from your thigh.”
The young Tha’alaba kept on crying and he was adamant that he was not deserving of the kindness and compassion of the prophet of Allah . The prophet (saw) then asked him: “ O! Tha’alaba what do you want?” He replied: “ The Mercy of Allah(swt)”.
The prophet asked him then : “ What are you afraid of?” He replied: “ I am afraid of the punishment of Allah”. The prophet then asked him: “ What do you wish for?” He replied: “ I wish for the forgiveness of Allah”.
While Tha’alaba continued to cry the Prophet made dua asking Forgiveness for Tha’alaba.
Suddenly Tha’alaba shook. The prophet (saw) asked him what was the matter. Tha’alaba replied: “ I feel, as though ants are walking between my flesh and my bones.” The prophet (saw) said to him: “ If you feel that, that is death. It is coming to you”
Tha’alaba kept on saying the Shahada, Astagfirullah, until the soul left his body.
The prophet (saw) washed his body and covered him, and prayed over him. While they were carrying him to the cemetery...
... While they were carrying him to the cemetery, the Prophet (saw) was walking behind his body and he was walking... ...He (saw) was walking on the tips of his toes as if the area around him was very crowded.
Then Umar (RA) said: “O! Messenger of Allah! People are giving you a lot of space and you are walking on the tips of your toes!”
The prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) replied: “ O!Umar, Allah had mercy on him. I can not find a place to put my foot because of the way the Angels are crowding me over him.”
In the later generations, after the generation of the prophet (saw) and the Companions ,things that carried so much significance during their time started to become less significant. Now days looking at images on TV and magazines and internet often is taken for granted and people are so much used to it they do not even think about it.
Slideshare: By Xenia http://xeniagreekmuslimah.wordpress.com Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hRq2Sfg77dA&feature=player_embedded#!