One Account, One Miracle
The Stones Spoke!
Mawlana Haydar Ali Madani
One Sunday, Granddad left the masjid after Fajr and headed to the local park. His grandchildren, Suhayb and Khubayb, were with him, but it seemed as though they were debating about something with one another.
Granddad met with some of his friends near the park bench. He eventually inquired, “What are you two debating about?”
Suhayb went to answer, but Khubayb quickly interjected. “Granddad, Suhayb left his tasbih at home, so he’s trying to take mine!”
“If you left your tasbih at home,” said Granddad, “why are you worried? You can use your fingers to make tasbih instead.”
A bird swooped in, landing on a nearby tree, its melodious chirps echoing through the branches. “سُـبْحٰـنَ الـلّٰــه,” exclaimed Granddad. “This bird also makes dhikr of Allah and glorifies Him. Yet, you will never see a bird holding a tasbih!”
Suhayb and Khubayb smiled.
“How did you know this bird is making dhikr of Allah?” Suhayb quizzed. “It just seems like birds make noise in the mornings to wake people up.”
It was then Granddad’s turn to smile. “This is not the case!”, he beamed. “Allah, Who created animals, birds and everything else, says in the Quran:
‘The seven heavens, and the earth, and all those in them glorify Him. And there is not a thing that does not proclaim His Purity whilst praising Him. Yes; you do not understand their ˹method of˺ glorification.’
The fact is we are humans, and we do not understand the language of other creatures. So, we do not understand the dhikr they make.” Granddad explained. “Allah sometimes allows humans to hear these tasbih however, by the blessings of those He loves.”
Suhayb and Khubayb were astonished.
“Has this happened before?” Khubayb asked, “Has someone heard their tasbih before?”
“Yes my son!”, Granddad replied, “Animals and birds on one side, let me tell you of how people even heard lifeless stones making tasbih! Come, let me tell you a story: The Messenger of Allah صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم had a great Companion named Abū Dharr al-Ghifārī رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ . This Companion once said:
I once came and sat with the Messenger of Allah صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم . Abū Bakr, ʿUmar, and ʿUthmān رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُم also arrived. The Messenger of Allah صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم picked up some stones which began to recite tasbih in his hands, to the extent I heard these stones making sounds similar to that of a bumblebee in his blessed hands.”
When Granddad finished explaining, Suhayb and Khubayb exclaimed, “This is indeed a miracle!”
“Yes children, this was a miracle of our beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم . Lifeless stones would make dhikr in his blessed hands. This was even heard by Sayyidunā Abū Dharr al-Ghifārī رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ .”
“I wanted to explain something to you, that’s why I mentioned all of this!” Granddad said. “We can use tasbih beads to make dhikr of Allah or send prayers on the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم . But this does not mean that without a tasbih, we cannot recite these things at all. Now get up and head home! Do you remember what your Grandmother said for you to do?”
“Yes Granddad” Suhayb replied, “she said the family will get together every Sunday for breakfast. Whoever doesn’t come will not be given any.”
This made all of them smile, and they set off home together.