Commentary ~ Qutaibah and His Prisoner

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Abu ‘Ubaidah relates that a number of people were presented to Al-Hajjaj; they were all accused of rebelling against him, and so he ordered that they all be executed. Because the time of prayer had arrived, there remained one from them who was still not executed. Al-Hajjaj said to Qutaibah bin Muslim, “He shall remain with you and you will bring him to us early tomorrow.”

Qutaibah said: I went and took the man with me, and as we were on our way, he said, “Qutaibah, do you wish to do a good deed?” I asked, “And what is that?” He said, “I have things that were trusted to me by people, and your companion, Al-Hajjaj, will surely kill me. Let me go free so that I may return each item to its rightful owner. And Allah is my Guarantor that I will return to you tomorrow.” I was amazed at what he said, and I laughed at him. He then repeated for a second time the same words and said, “By Allah, I will return to you.” He continued and persisted in the same manner, until finally, I said, “Go.” When he left, and when I could no longer see him, I returned to my senses and said: ‘What did you do to yourself, O Qutaibah?’ I returned to my family and spent the night, which seemed to last forever. In the morning, there was a man knocking at our door, and when I went to open it, there stood before me the same man from the day before. I said, “You have returned?” He said, “I made Allah as a Guarantor and then why should I not return?” I took him with me, and when Al-Hajjaj saw me, he said, “Where is the prisoner, Qutaibah?” I said, “He is at the door.” I brought him before the ruler and I informed him of the story. Al-Hajjaj gave him many piercing glances, and then said to me, “I give him to you as a gift.” I left with him and when we had exited from the building, I said to him, “Go wherever you please.” The man raised his head to the sky and said, “O Allah, all praise is for You.” He said nothing more and left.

Gems and Jewels
Compiled by: Abdul-Malik Mujahid
Publisher: Maktaba Dar-us-Salam
ISBN: 9960-897-59-1

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