This is our second sample of The Tree of Light Vol 2 concerning the lives of the Prophets. In this adaptation of Hajiah Amina Adil’s beautiful and comprehensive history of the Prophets a sage grandfather recounts the stories of the Prophets to his two adventurous grandsons who find that the lives of the Prophets have come to life.
One day a storm came and blew away all of Ayyoub’s (a) wealth including his fields, animals and possessions. Iblis ran to Ayyoub (a) in the mosque and asked him how he could pray to an unseen God while he lost everything. Ayyoub (a) said that if Iblis were good he would have been blown away as well. The angels celebrated the faith of Ayyoub (a) and this angered Iblis very much.
Iblis then assembled the family of Ayyoub (a) and brought an earthquake on their heads. When Iblis ran to tell Ayyoub (a) he said that if there had been any good in Iblis he would have died in the earthquake. Iblis then said that Ayyoub (a) only continued to worship his Lord because he had good health. Allah (s) gave Iblis permission to harm the health of Ayyoub (a).
Iblis blew a poison from Hell onto Ayyoub (a) and he became swollen and burned, covered in sores that were infected with worms. Then Iblis ran to tell all the people of the village that Ayyoub (a) was so afflicted because he would not worship the idol.
“Why did Allah (s) let Iblis burn Ayyoub (a)?” Sulayman asked.
“Hmm.” Grandfather turned his prayer beads in his fingers, “Ayyoub (a) had these tests by the permission of his Lord to show us something. Are you knowing what that something is?”
Sulayman frowned, thinking hard. “That Iblis is bad? Iblis is going to hurt us. I don’t want Iblis to bother me.”
“Allah (s) is teaching us that Ayyoub (a) is an example. He will not stop loving Allah (s) because he loses the good things of Dunya, this world, because the good things of Dunya have no value compared to the good things of Akhira, the eternal world. What reward do we have in Akhira?”
“Candy!” piped Yusuf.
“Yes, candy and toys and cake and …” said Sulayman.
“Yes, well, something like that,” said Grandfather.
The people of the village thought that the illness of Ayyoub (a) was contagious and so they made Ayyoub (a) leave. His wife Rahma (r) carried him to the wilderness and nursed him during his illness. For years Rahma (r) travelled far looking for work to feed Ayyoub (a). It was hard to find a place where Iblis had not warned the people to turn her away because her husband was a leper.
“What is a leper?”
“Leprosy is a sickness. It is easy to cure now but in the time of Ayyoub (a) it was a grave illness that people were very afraid of because of the terrible things it did to the body,
and they knew that it was contagious and that if you had it you could make other people ill as well.
So, they would make people with this illness go away and not live near the healthy.”
“Did his wife have the sickness?”
“Allah (s) protected her and she had very strong faith.”
One day when Rahma (r) went to work her mistress said she would give her no work and no food unless she cut her hair so she did and took the bread home to her husband. In this time ladies with short hair were people who had done bad things. Ayyoub (a) was upset to see her like this and said that he would punish her. Rahma (r) said she did nothing wrong and Allah (s) was her witness.
Ayyoub (a) slowly healed but his followers were confused by his condition and could not understand how Allah (s) would allow an enlightened person to suffer so much. They returned to the worship of idols because they were afraid to be ill like Ayyoub (a). This made Ayyoub (a) very sad and he asked his Lord for help.
Ayyoub (a) was directed by his Lord to a certain place and his followers came to see what he was doing. He struck the ground with his foot and water came from that place shooting up to the sky. The water washed away the sickness of Ayyoub (a). When Rahma (r) came she was returned to youth and beauty as well by the water and the followers of Ayyoub (a) begged his forgiveness.