The Fit Camel

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The Fit Camel

عَبْدَ اللهِ بْنَ عُمَرَ ، رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُمَا ، قَالَ : سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ : إِنَّمَا النَّاسُ كَالإِبِلِ الْمِائَةُ لاَ تَكَادُ تَجِدُ فِيهَا رَاحِلَةً.

 

‘Abdullah bin `Umar (radi Allahu anhuma) narrated:

I heard Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) saying, “People are just like camels, out of one hundred, one can hardly find a single camel suitable to ride.”[1]

 

 

The chapter for this hadith:

Imam Al-Bukhari placed this hadeeth under the chapter  “The disappearance of the Trust”, Imam Badrudeen Al-‘Ayni said, : The reason this title was added to the hadith is because this hadeeth means there are many people, but those who are pleasing and honest are few and far in between and this is similar to the camel fit for riding. The displeasing people to Allah are those who don’t perform their obligations. Ibn Abbass explained the word trust as being religious and worldly duties.[2]

Shaykh Abdul Aziz bin Baz said: When you thoroughly investigate people to fill the vacancies as judges and teachers you can hardly find anyone qualified to hold the position. That is because the trust is divided into two types:

  • Religious duties which are directly connected to Allah’s Rights: These rights include the obligations to do His commands and avoid His Prohibitions
  • Worldly duties which are related to Human’s rights. Included in these rights are their wealth, honor, property and everything the Shariah protects.[3]

USED CAMELS copy

 Contemporary Society issues derived from this hadeeth.

The prophet (ﷺ) intended the latter generations in this hadeeth. Those people who will live near the end of time. He didn’t intend the era of the Sahaba and the Taa’boon; as he attested to their  virtue. “Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, ‘The best of my followers are those living in my generation. Then those who will follow the latter” `Imran added, “I do not remember whether he mentioned two or three generations after his generation, then the Prophet (ﷺ) added, ‘There will come after you, people who will bear witness without being asked to do so, and will be treacherous and untrustworthy, and they will vow and never fulfill their vows, and fatness will appear among them [4]

Abdur Rahman As-Sa’di(may Allah shower him with mercy) said : This hadith highlights a true story and beneficial guidance for this Ummah.

The true story from this hadeeth is the Prophet (ﷺ) explained that many or most people are deficient and those who are complete or even close to being absolute are rare. This is similar to a 100 camels. If there are 100 camels and you need one to come and go on a journey then your chances of finding that one suitable for the task will be  difficult. The same goes for people! There are a lot of people, but if you wanted to elect one for the position of being a teacher, Mufti, leader or any other high or low level job it would be very complicated to find the right person. This is the reality today .People are oppressed and ignorant and this is a result from the unqualified people holding those posts. Ignorance and oppression prevent perfection.

The beneficial guidance from this hadeeth is the Muslim Ummah must strive diligently to find qualified people to fill vacant careers and Islamic posts. For each and every affair which benefits the people Allah has addressed how it must be done. He said; “  Of every troop of them, a party only should go forth, that they (who are left behind) may get instructions in (Islamic) religion, and that they may warn their people when they return to them…[ Taubah 122]

Allah ordered that a troop go out to fight in His cause and the other group goes to study. Hence, each group will help each other. Allah only ordered that certain people be entrusted with certain things; by means of conditions and the proper qualifications.

The vacancies for religious and worldly occupations must have  people who can  properly carry out the tasks. This maintains the well-being of any society. The occupation must be held by those qualified and trustworthy. Therefore, people must strive to appoint those qualified to the best of their ability. Allah said:   So keep your duty to Allah and fear Him as much as you can[ Al-Taghabun 16][5]

Translated and compiled by:

Abu Aaliyah Abdullah ibn Dwight Lamont Battle

Doha, Qatar 1436©

 

 

[1] Sahih Al-Bukhari # 6133

[2] [ ‘Ummdatul Qari vol 23/ 128]

[3] [ Al-Hullalu Al-Ibreezee vol 4/ pg 253]

[4] (Bukhari, Volume 5, Book 57, Hadith #2). Sharh Sahih Al-Bukhari ibn Battal vol 10/207

 

[5] Bahjatu Qalub, Shaykh Abdur Rahman As-Sa’di , Hadeeth # 98

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