Story No. 226 – Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (as) and taking care of Helpless in Islam
One day Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (as) saw an old woman carrying a heavy load of firewood which she could ill afford to lift, she was tottering under the weight. Maula-e-Kainat, Imam Ali (as) relieved her of her weight carried it to her hamlet and on her request lighted her oven for her and gave her some money also. Old woman did not know who Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib (as) was and was thanking him for his kindness when a neighbour entered the hamlet, recognized Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib (as) and told her, who he was, only then she realized that who had served her like an obedient servant was the Caliph and the king of a fast growing kingdom.
Only after Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib’s (as) death the world came to know that he had provided a shelter for a leper in an advanced stage of the disease. The shelter was outside the town, he used to go there daily, dress his wounds, feed him with his own hands (because the leper had lost his hands), wash him, put his bed in order and carry him out of the shelter for little time, so that he may get fresh air. Accidentally relatives and friends of Moula Ali (as) came across this shelter and found a leper in it, learned his history and told him Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib (as) was martyred and they had just then buried him. The news so affected the poor cripple that he died on the spot.