Shaykh-ul-Islam Sayyiduna Abu Haris Lays Bin Sa’d Fahmi رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه was a great Egyptian scholar, Hafiz of Hadees and the ruler of Egypt. Egyptians would feel proud of him. The judges, caretakers and administrators of Egypt all would obey his orders. Egyptians would consult with him and seek his opinion in their matters. Sayyiduna Lays Bin Sa’d رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه was born in Sha’ban-ul-Mu’azzam, 94 AH and passed away in the middle of Sha’ban, 175 AH on Friday or Thursday night. Khalid Bin Abdus Salaam Sadafi has narrated, ‘I attended the funeral Salah of Sayyiduna Lays Bin Sa’d رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه with my father. A large number of people attended the funeral Salah. I had never seen such a huge number of people in any other funeral Salah before that. All the people who attended the funeral Salah were extremely grieved and sad and were weeping while expressing their condolences to one another. I said to my father, ‘Dear father! It seems as if every person who attended the funeral Salah was a member of the (bereaved) family’. His father said, ‘Son! Now you will never be able to see such a personality.’ (Siyar A’lam-un-Nubala, vol. 7, pp. 438, 443,455)
His son Shu’ayb has stated, ‘My father’s annual income was 20 to 25 thousand dinars (gold coins), but he would get into debt (due to spending his income in the way of Allah Almighty) when the new year would begin. Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه has stated about himself, ‘Zakah has never become Fard (obligatory) upon me since I reached puberty.’ (Siyar A’lam-un-Nubala, vol. 7, pp. 447, 449)
Response to expectation
* Once, some people bought fruits from Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه, but later on they felt that they were charged more for the fruits than they should have been. They decided to do Iqalah (i.e. get the dealing cancelled). Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه not only accepted the cancelation of the dealing, but he also ordered to give them fifty dinars. When his son Haris asked the reason for this, he replied, ‘May Allah عَزَّوَجَلَّ forgive me; they had a great expectation from me in this dealing so I liked responding to their expectation in the form of fifty dinars. (Siyar-e-A’lam-un-Nubala, vol. 7, pp. 447)
Glimpses of generosity
* Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would organize a gathering to fulfil the needs of people. He would fulfil the need of the one who would ask for help without considering whether the need was a minor one or a big one. Whenever he would eat morning and evening meal, he would eat with people. In winter, he would serve people with halva (a dessert) mixed with honey and ghee and in summer, he would serve people with sugar and roasted flour of almond. (Siyar A’lam-un-Nubala, vol. 7, pp. 448).
* Sayyiduna Qutaybah رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه has stated, ‘Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would take a ride to Jami’ Masjid for Salah and would give Sadaqah and charity to 300 Masakeen (poor people) daily.
* He رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه was so generous that he رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would give according to his financial status to the one who would ask him according to his/her position. A woman once came to him and said, ‘O Abu Haris! My son is ill and wants to eat honey’. He رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه gave her 120 Ratl (i.e. 47.239 kg) honey. (Siyar A’lam-un-Nubala, vol. 7, pp. 447, 453)
Special favours for Islamic scholars
* Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would send 100 dinars annually to Imam Maalik. Once, when Imam Maalik got into debt, he sent him 500 dinars. On the occasion of his daughter’s marriage, Imam Maalik رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه asked for some safflower (a herb with yellow petals) from Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه. He sent him safflower loaded on thirty camels. Imam Maalik رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه sold some of it for 500 dinars and the remaining was left with him. Once, Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه went on a Hajj pilgrimage. When he reached sacred Madinah, Imam Maalik رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه sent him a big plate filled with dates. In return for this, he رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه put 1000 dinars in the plate and presented it to Imam Maalik رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه (Siyar A’lam-un-Nubala, vol. 7, pp. 447, 448)
* Sayyiduna Mansoor Bin ‘Ammar رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه has stated, ‘Once, I visited Sayyiduna Lays رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه when he was alone. He drew a bag from his prayer mate that contained 1000 dinars. He gave me the bag and said, ‘Do not tell my son about it lest it degrades you in his eyes’. (Hilyat-ul-Awliya, vol. 7, pp. 375, Raqm 10903) When his son Shu’ayb learnt about it, he sent 999 dinars to Sayyiduna Mansoor Bin ‘Ammar رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه. Explaining the reason why he sent one dinar less, he said that he did so not to become equal to his father in the act of giving. (Hilyat-ul-Awliya, vol. 7, pp. 376, Raqm 10910)
I make Du’a to Allah عَزَّوَجَلَّ Almighty to give us Taufeeq to earn our livelihood in permissible ways and spend out of it in His way!
اٰمِیْن بِجَاہِ النَّبِیِّ الْاَمِیْن صلَّی اللہ علیہ واٰلہٖ وسلَّم
Share of leading Islamic scholars in the profit of trade
The stock of Imam-e-A’zam رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه used to be purchased from Baghdad and used to be taken to Kufa. When he would receive the annual profit, he would buy food, clothes and other things of daily use for leading Muhaddiseen of Kufa and would send them these things. He would also send them the remaining dinars and profit with the message: ‘Spend them on your needs and express gratitude towards only Allah Almighty. I do not give you anything from my own wealth, but rather I give you from the grace and mercy which Allah Almighty has on me because of you. All these profits are for you. By Allah عَزَّوَجَلَّ, Allah Almighty has blessed me with these profits for you. There is also the right of others in the wealth bestowed by Allah عَزَّوَجَلَّ.’ (Manaqib-ul-Imam-ul-A’zam Abi Hanifah Lil Muwaffaq, part 1, pp. 262)
Would buy best thing to give others
Sayyiduna Mis’ar Bin Kidaam رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه has said, ‘Imam Abu Hanifah رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would spend on leading Islamic scholars as much as he would spend on his family. The same he رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would do when he رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would buy clothes, or get fruits or dates from somewhere. Whatever he رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would desire to buy for his family, he رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would buy first for leading Islamic scholars and then for his family.
When he رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would buy something with the intention of giving it to a friend or giving it in charity, he رَحْمَةُ اللّٰهِ عَلَيْه would buy the best thing according to his financial position, but he would not take such care when he would buy something for his family. (Manaqib-ul-Imam-ul-A’zam Abi Hanifah lil Muwaffaq, part 1, pp. 261)