The Story of Little Zayd
A Helping Hand
Mawlana Haider Ali Madani
“Little Zayd! Please can you get off the sofa and help us put out the food,” called out Little Zayd’s sister, as she walked towards the dining table with a bowl of salad. Little Zayd was busy watching Ghulam Rasool on Madani Channel with his cousin Ghulam Mujtaba.
As it was Sunday, Little Zayd’s cousins had come round, and together they had made his house feel more like a playground than a home.
Mum was preparing lunch for the children, with the help of Little Zayd’s sister, but despite being called many times, Little Zayd still didn’t get up to lend a helping hand in putting the food out. Eventually, Zayd’s sister began to lay the dining table herself with the help of her cousins. Then Mum called out, “Come on, children! Wash your hands and mouths and come to the dining table! Lunch is ready.”
Little Zayd rushed to the dining table, and sat down first, before everyone else. “Pasta! I love pasta!” he burst out in excitement.
“Yes, it’s pasta. And I helped make it,” snapped his sister “so, don’t forget to compliment me whilst eating it and make sure you thank me when you’re finished.” The sharp words struck Little Zayd. He would have walked away but the smell of freshly cooked pasta kept him glued to his seat.
Grandma joined the children for lunch as well. “Read the supplication for eating,” she encouraged Ghulam Mujtaba. He confidently said:
“بِسْمِ اللّٰهِ وَ عَلٰی بَرَ کَۃِ اللّٰهِ ط”
In the name of Allah Almighty and with the blessings of Allah Almighty.
When everyone began eating, Zayd’s sister saw her chance and said, “When some people are told to help out, they act like they haven’t even heard, but when they are called to eat, they are the first to get to the table!”
Mum and Grandma both smiled, knowing exactly who she was talking about. Little Zayd also realised his sister was hinting at him and bellowed, “Well, important people don’t have to do housework!”
“Since when have you become important?” his sister retorted.
Their eldest sister, Aisha, who had been silent up until now, asked Grandma, “Is it true that important people don’t have to do housework?”
“No. That’s not true.” Grandma then began to explain, “There is nobody more important than our beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم . Do you know about his blessed conduct in the home?”
Ghulam Mujtaba replied, “Grandma! I heard on Madani Channel that our beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم would help his family members with household work.”
Yes. Exactly. Let me tell you a story about our beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم . Sayyidatuna Halima رَضِیَ الـلّٰـهُ عَنْهَا says that during the childhood of the beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم , he came to her one day and said, ‘Beloved mother! I do not see my brothers and sisters in the morning and throughout the day. Where do they go after they wake up?’ She replied, ‘They go out to herd the goats.’ Hearing this, he said, ‘Beloved mother! Give me permission to go out and herd the goats with my siblings too.’ Thus, after receiving permission, the beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم would go with the other children every day.
So, dear children, our beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم would help his family members in his childhood, and we should follow his example.
Little Zayd listened carefully and had now understood what he had done wrong. Everyone finished eating, and after Ghulam Mujtaba had recited the appropriate supplication, Little Zayd was the first to start picking up the dishes and taking them to the sink.
Note: Our beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم did not have any biological brothers and sisters, but Sayyidatuna Halima رَضِیَ الـلّٰـهُ عَنْهَا nursed the beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم in his childhood, so her children became the milk-brothers and sisters of the beloved Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم .