Hazrat Moulana Ashraf Ali Thaanwi (rahimahullah) – Part Five
Safeguarding the Deen of People
On one occasion, a certain person brought some sugarcane juice and presented it to Hazrat Moulana Thaanwi (rahimahullah) as a gift from a land that was given as collateral. However, Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah) refrained from accepting the gift.
The reason for Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah) refraining from accepting the gift was that he did not want people to think that deriving benefit from a land given as collateral is permissible.
In those days, the general norm was that people would take a collateral for the loan or debt they were owed. Thereafter, they would derive benefit from the collateral, whereas in Shari’ah, it is impermissible for one to derive any benefit from the collateral one receives to secure the loan or debt. The benefit one acquires through the collateral is haraam and interest.
Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah) then explained the reason for him not accepting the gift saying, “This juice has been extracted from sugarcane which is growing on a land that has been given as collateral for a loan. Though it is permissible for me to accept the juice extracted from the sugarcane of this land (as the owner of the land himself is giving it to me and not the one to whom the land was given as collateral), however how will I go to all the people and explain this to them?
“All the people will say that I am now taking juice from sugarcane grown on land held as collateral from the one who accepted the collateral, and from this, they will all begin to think that benefiting from the collateral is permissible. If I accept the gift of the juice, then though I will be receiving some worldly benefit – however through this, the deen of others will be affected, and how can I allow this to happen, where my action becomes the means for people’s deen being affected?” (Seerat-e-Ashraf 1/331)
Istiqaamat (punctuality) on one’s ma’moolaat (i.e. daily devotional practices) is extremely important for one to progress and acquire barakah in one’s efforts. Hence, it is important for one to stipulate a special time every day for each work that one wishes to fulfil. Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah) would endeavour to always remain punctual on his ma’moolaat.
It is mentioned that on one occasion, Hazrat Sheikhul Hind, Moulana Mahmoodul Hasan (rahimahullah), arrived at the home of Hazrat Moulana Thaanwi (rahimahullah) as his guest. Hazrat Sheikhul Hind (rahimahullah) was among the ustaads of Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah).
Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah) made all the arrangements for his ustaad and ensured that he was comfortable. Thereafter, when the stipulated time arrived when Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah) would carry out his writing work, he went to his ustaad and respectfully said, “Hazrat! Generally, I carry out some writing work at this time. If you permit, I will go and write for a short while and will thereafter return and remain in your company.”
Hazrat Sheikhul Hind (rahimahullah) was pleased with the punctuality of Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah) on his ma’mool and immediately permitted him to go saying, “Definitely! Go and carry out your writing work! I should not become the means for your work being affected!”
Though the heart of Hazrat Thaanwi (rahimahullah) was not in his writing work on that occasion, due to his beloved ustaad being present, he still went and wrote for a short while to ensure that he did not lose the barakah of istiqaamat. After writing for just a few moments, he returned and spent time with Hazrat Sheikhul Hind (rahimahullah). (Seerat-e-Ashraf 1/ 359-360)