Mas’ud ad-Darir

Salih al-Mirri narrated:

“Malik bin Dinar said to me: “Come by tomorrow, O Abu Salih, for I have promised a group of the brothers that we would go visit Abu Juhayr Mas’ud ad-Darir in al-Jiban so that we could give him our greetings.”

And this man, Abu Juhayr, had secluded himself in a nearby village and devoted himself to worship, and he never used to enter al-Basrah proper except on Fridays during the time of the prayer, then he would return to his home as soon as it was over.

The next day, I made my way to Malik’s home on the way to al-Jiban to find that he was already ahead of me on the way, and with him was Muhammad bin Wasi’, Thabit al-Binani and Habib. When I saw them all together, I said to myself “By Allah, this is indeed a day of joy!”

So, we left together to go see Abu Juhayr.

Whenever Malik would come across a clean area, he would say to Thabit: “Pray here, because it might be that tomorrow, this piece of earth will testify on your behalf,” and then Thabit would pray there.

We then kept walking until we arrived to Abu Juhayr’s residence, where we asked about him. We were told that he was just about to come out to leave for the prayer, so we waited for him. Eventually, a man that you could say had just emerged from his grave came out of the house, came to a man standing nearby, and took him by the hand to the nearby masjid. They stood at the door of the masjid briefly talking, then he (Abu Juhayr) entered and prayed for as long as Allah Willed, then he called the Iqamah and we prayed behind him.

When he completed his prayer, he sat as if he was heading an important meeting, and the people unanimously came by to greet him. So, Muhammad bin Wasi’ stepped forward to greet him, as well. Abu Juhayr replied to his greeting and said: “Who are you? I do not recognize your voice.” He said: “I am from the people of al-Basrah.” Abu Juhayr replied: “What is you name, may Allah have Mercy upon you?” He said: “I am Muhammad bin Wasi’.” Abu Juhayr said: “Welcome; you are the one whom these people – and he pointed towards al-Basrah – say is the best of them? Sit down.” So, he sat down.

Then Thabit al-Binani got up and greeted him, so he returned his greeting and asked: “Who are you, may Allah have Mercy upon you?” He replied: “I am Thabit al-Binani.” Abu Juhayr said: “Welcome, Thabit al-Binani. You are the one that the people of this town say stand the longest in prayer? Sit, for I had been wishing from my Lord to meet your likes.”

Then Habib Abu Muhammad got up and greeted him, so he returned his greeting and asked: “Who are you, may Allah have Mercy upon you?” He replied: “I am Habib Abu Muhammad.” Abu Juhayr said: “Welcome, Abu Muhammad. You are the one that these people claim never asks Allah anything except that it is given to you? Sit, may Allah have Mercy upon you.” So, he took his hand and sat him down next to him.

Then Malik bin Dinar got up and greeted him, so he returned his greeting and asked: “Who are you, may Allah have Mercy upon you?” He replied: “I am Malik bin Dinar.” Abu Juhayr said: “Bakh bakh (an Ethiopian expression of happiness) Abu Yahya! If you are as they say, then are you, as these people claim, the most abstentious from the worldly life of them all? Sit now, for everything that I have ever wanted from my Lord in this world has now been given to me.”

Then I got up to greet him, and the others began speaking over my voice, so Abu Juhayr said to them: “Remember how you will be tomorrow between the Hands of Allah on the gathering of the Resurrection.” I then greeted him, so he returned my greeting and asked: “Who are you, may Allah have Mercy upon you?” I replied: “I am Salih al-Mirri.” He said to me: “You are the young reciter? You are Abu Bishr?” I said: “Yes.”

He told me: “Recite, Salih.” So, I began to recite, and I did not get past seeking refuge with Allah except that he had already become overwhelmed. He then told me to start again, so I did and recited {“And We shall turn to whatever deeds they did, and We shall make them as scattered floating particles of dust.”} [al-Furqan;23]

He then collapsed and turned over on his face, and part of his body was exposed as it began moving around as a bull would, then his body became still. We looked at him and saw that his soul had been extracted (he had died).

So, we went out and asked if there was anyone that would tend to him. We were told that there was an elderly woman who used to come and serve him on some days, so we sent for her. She came and said: “What happened to him?”

We said: “The Qur’an was recited in his presence, so he died.”

She said: “It was befitting of him, by Allah. Who was the one who recited for him? It might be that he is a righteous reciter.”

We said: “Do you know who Salih is?”

She said: “I do not know him, except that I used to often hear him (Abu Juhayr) say: “If Salih recites in front of me, he will kill me.””

We said: “Well, he (Salih) is the one who recited in front of him,” and they pointed to me.

So, we prepared his body and buried him, may Allah have Mercy upon him.”

[‘Sifat as-Safwah’; 2/196-197]

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