Adapted for children from an Arabic story by Khadijah Stephens

The class had just finished, and the shaykh had put his books into his case. That day he had been telling the class stories about Prophet Muhammad, praise and peace be upon him, and the children were sorry the class was over.

The children loved his class and had sat patiently on the floor listening and enjoying the stories. Nobody was ever late for his class, and their homework was always in on time!

Just as the shaykh was about to leave the classroom he overheard one of his young students say: "Oh, I wish I could see Prophet Muhammad." "Me too," said another, in fact all the class joined in and said that they wished they could see him as well.

The shaykh put down his case and asked: "Do you really want to see Prophet Muhammad, praise and peace be upon him?" His pupils all replied: "Oh, yes Maulana!"

"Are you sure?" he asked again. "Yes, yes, very sure," they replied. "All right," he said, "I will tell you what you must do. Before you go to bed tonight you must eat a lot of lentils and chili, but you must not drink any water until the morning, not even one sip -- do you agree?" The students were so excited that they all told him they agreed.

That night the children ate as much lentils and chili as they could possibly manage, then, they said their prayers and went to bed feeling rather thirsty!

The next morning the children went to school and sat down ready for the shaykh to arrive and give them their lesson but none of them were at all happy.

As the shaykh entered the room they all stood up to greet him: "As-Salamu alaykum Maulana" they said: "Wa laykum as-Salam" he replied.

The shaykh looked at their faces and asked what was the matter. One of them stood up and said: "Maulana, we all did exactly as you told us, but none of us saw Prophet Muhammad, praise and peace be upon him."

The shaykh smiled gently and asked: "Did any of you see anything at all last night?" The first boy said: "I saw water gushing from a tap." Another said: "I saw a fountain of water." Another said: "I saw a waterfall." Another said: "I saw rain pouring down from the sky."

The shaykh asked each of his students in turn what they had seen that night, and everyone told him they had seen something or other to do with water!

The shaykh looked at them and said: "Think about this for a moment. Last night you went to sleep feeling very, very thirsty on account of all the lentils and chili had eaten -- you were very, very anxious for a drink of water. That is the reason why you all saw water in your dreams. Now, if you had been as anxious to see Prophet Muhammad, praise and peace be upon him, as you had been for water, you would surely have seen him."


This book is copyrighted 1993 - 1999 by Khadijah Stephens and the Mosque of the Internet All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without permission in writing from Khadijah Stephens or the Mosque of the Internet.


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