Story 88: Apprentice Of The Draper

The apprentice of the draper was unaware of what trap had been laid before him. He did not know that this beautiful and dignified woman who was frequently coming into the shop under the pretext of purchasing, had fallen in love with him, and her heart was filled with a deluge of love, passion and desire.

One day, the same woman came to the shop, ordering to separate a large amount of materials. Then, under the excuse of not being able to carry them and not having money with her, she said: "Give the materials to this youngster so that he can carry them to my house and fetch the money."

Earlier she had prepared the house for her purpose, and there was nobody in except a few private maids of hers. Muhammad Ibn Sirin, who was still a teenager, smart and handsome, shouldered the material and went along with the woman. As he entered the house, the door was closed behind. He was guided to a pompous room, and he awaited for the lady to receive the material and pay the money as soon as possible.

The expectation lasted for quite a long time. After some time, the curtains were drawn up. The lady came out, well-dressed, and in full make-up entered the room in a coquettish behaviour.

In a short instance, Ibn Sirin understood what trap had been laid. He thought to make the lady change her mind by preaching, advising or begging her, but he found all in vain. Explaining to him about her fervent love, she said: "I was not the purchaser of your material but the purchaser of you!"

Ibn Sirin began preaching and advising her and spoke about the Day of Resurrection and fear of the Almighty Allah, but there was no effect on her heart; he begged her, but it was of no use. She said: "There is no other alternative, you have to fulfil my desire." As she saw Ibn Sirin insisting on her not to do so, she threatened him: "If you do not respect my love and make me happy, I will shout and say that this youngster has a bad intention towards me; then it is obvious what will happen to you!"

Ibn Sirin was so scared that all the hairs of his body stood erect. On one side, faith, belief, and piety commanded him to preserve his own chastity. On the other side, his refusal of that woman's desire could cost him his life, honour, and prestige. He did not see any remedy but to show his obedience.

Suddenly a trick flicked in his mind; he thought! "There is only one way left for me. I must do something that her love will change to hatred so that she herself might leave me alone, and I could preserve my chastity from any kind of polluted vices. I will have to tolerate the visible pollution for an instance."

Thus he went out under the pretext of easing nature-call in toilet, came back with the polluted appearance and went towards the woman. As she saw him in that condition, she frowned and without any hesitation threw him away from her house.1

  • 1. Al-Kuna wa al-Alqab, Muhaddith al-Qummi, v. 1. p. 313.