Story No. 221 – Amir al-Muminin, Imam Ali (as) and his two servants: Qambar and Saeed
Amir al-Muminin, Imam Ali (as) with his servantsAfter the martyrdom of Amir al-Muminin, Imam Ali (as), Qambar, servant of Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib (as) related that he very seldom had the occasion to serve his master. Amir al-Muminin, Imam Ali (as) used to do his work for himself, used to wash his own clothing, used even to patch them whenever needed. He would draw water from the well for his daily use. Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib (as) would give them good food and decent dresses, and would himself eat and dress like a very poor man. Let alone whipping or beating he never even got angry with us. He never used a cane even on his horse, camel or mule. These animals apparently understood his mood and desire and would trot and walk as he wished them to do. His often used phrase with them was “go easy child”. Continuing Qambar said:
Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (as) and saving wealth (money)
Once and only once Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib (as) got annoyed with me. It was the occasion when I showed him the money that I had hoarded. It was from my share of income given to me like others from the State Treasury (Baytul Mal) and the gifts I had received from the members of his family. I had no immediate use of it and had collected the amount. It was not much, being barely 100 Dirhams. When I showed him the amount he looked annoyed and what pained me more he looked very sad. I enquired as to why he was so sad, he said: “Qambar, if you had no use of this money, were there not people around you who were in need of it, some of them might have been starving and some ill and infirm, could you not have helped them. I never thought that you could be so heartless and cruel, and could love wealth for the sake of wealth.”
Qambar I am afraid you are not trying to acquire much from Islam, try more seriously and sincerely. Take these coins out of my house. I took them out and distributed them amongst the beggars in the Kufa mosque.
Is Money is everything?
Some people say ‘Money is everything’. It will be advisable for such people to consider the following facts:
“Money will buy a Bed but not sleep, Books but not brains, Food but not appetite, Finery but not beauty, Medicine but not health; Luxuries but not culture, Amusements but not happiness, Passport to every where but not Heaven”.