5th Muharram Urs Hazrat Fuzail bin Iyaz (87 H./705 AD)

In the Chishti silsila he is the khalifa of Hazrat Khwaja ‘Abd al-Wahid bin Zayd, who is the khalifa of Hazrat Khwaja Hasan Basri. His spiritual descendant and khalifa is Hazrat Khwaja Ibrahim Adham. I do not have a picture of his dargah (mazar) or even know where it is located. The following story about his beginnings as a highway robber is considered an excellent teaching story both for understanding his attunement and in our understanding of what it means to be given a trust.

Prior to his reformation and renunciation of the world, Hadhrat Fuzail was the chief of a band of highway robbers. He operated in the desert attacking and looting passing caravans. Even while a bandit he wore simple garments of sackcloth and a woollen cap. A tasbeeh was always strung around his neck. When his band brought their plunder, he would take whatever he desired and distribute the remainder among them.

Although his profession was robbing, he always performed Salaat in Jamaat (as a congregation). He would expel any member of his band, who did not participate in Jamaat Salaat.
Another noble trait in him was that he had strict instructions for observing the Purdah of the female travellers in the caravans. Sufficient means for continuance of the caravan’s journey were also left with the people. Fuzail Bin Iyaaz would also keep account of the persons and the amounts he robbed. (Allah Ta’ala had wonderful plans for Hadhrat Fuzail, hence these noble characteristics were in him despite him being the leader of robbers.)

Once a big caravan laden with wealth had to pass through the territory where Fuzail’s bandits operated. As the caravan approached his territory, the people were gripped by fear and worry. Before entering into the feared zone, a man who had brought along considerable wealth thought of burying his wealth in the wilderness. Even if the caravan is looted, his gold and silver would be safe. While searching in the wilderness for a convenient place to conceal his gold, he came across a tent in which a buzurg was sitting on his prayer rug engrossed in zikr allah. This was an ideal place to hide the gold. He spoke to the buzurg who indicated to the merchant to leave the bag in one corner of the tent. After doing do, he left for the caravan.

As expected, Fuzail’s bandits looted the caravan. After the robbers had left, the merchant returned to the tent to reclaim his wealth. When he reached the tent, he was shocked to discover that all the bandits were there dividing the loot. Now to his dismay he realised the ‘buzurg’ was Fuzail, the leader of the bandits. He lamented the fact that he had destroyed his wealth with his own hands.

When Fuzail saw the merchant, he called him. Full of fear, the merchant stepped forward. Fuzail asked: “What do you want?” Merchant: “I came for my amaanat (trust) which I left by you.” Fuzail: “Take it from where you had left it.” At first the merchant thought Fuzail was mocking him. However, when Fuzail insisted, the merchant took his bag. Surprised and amazed he left for the caravan.

In surprise, the robbers asked: “Why did you return his money? We did not obtain any money in this caravan.” Fuzail said: “He trusted me and entertained a good opinion of me. I, therefore, honoured his trust. I hold a good opinion of Allah Ta’ala. By His fadhl, He too will uphold my hopes in His mercy.”

Also, the story of the tears that Hazrat Fuzail shed over his dying pupil is very famous. The Shaykh (RA) sat down near his dying pupil and began to recite Surah Ya-Sin. The pupil requested his teacher to stop his recitation. The Shaykh (RA) stopped his recitation. After a little pause he (RA) began to dictate the Kalimah. The pupil said (God forbid), I shall not recite it. I feel disgusted with it. After saying this, the pupil breathed his last.

The Shaykh Hazrat Fuzail bin Iyaz (RA) was so much aggrieved at this sad event that he (RA) remained weeping for forty days in his house at the fate of his pupil.

Hadhrat Abdullah Bin Mubaarak (rahmatullah alayh) said:”When Fuzail Bin Iyaaz died, even the heavens and the earth wept. An eerie silence was perceived.”

Possibly buried in Al Batha, Iraq but I have not confirmed this yet.

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