Sunday, October 01, 2023 | Rabi' al-awwal 15, 1445 H
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Stories from the Book of Misers


8) A miser shared a story with his other miser friends: “I suffered from a bad cough for days. People I know recommended eating Persian sweets called Faneeth and Khazeera (made from starch, sugar, and almond oil). I found both sweets costly in making so instead I started praying for wellness, till someone suggested drinking boiled bran. When I did, I found it delicious and kept me full till dinner time. Henceforth, I ordered my wife to boil bran for our children to keep them full and healthy. The boiled bran could then be strained from water, dried, and resold again. My wife loved the idea that she exclaimed: “The cough had obviously benefited you physically and economically!” And I think she’s right!” His friends agreed that such experience could only be caused by a divine encounter.

9) Mu’atha Al-Anbaria was gifted a goat by her cousin to slaughter. Being a widow with no one taking care of her, Mu’atha was worried that she won’t be able to benefit from the whole goat. She was sure that every part could be used somehow: the horns to be nailed on the house’s columns to hang clothes, baskets, cauldrons, and anything that needs keeping away from the reach of mice, snakes, and cockroaches. The intestines would be dried and strung on a piece of wood to fluff cotton mattresses. The skull bones would be broken and boiled to extract fat that is used for cooking and lamps. The bones used as fire fuel that is much cleaner and faster to cook with. The skin in making bags and flasks. As for the wool it has numerus benefits. She then thought for a while about the blood, how could it be used given the fact that it’s prohibited to consume in anyway? This caused her great anxiety till she remembered that she has some Levantine pots that could be strengthened by spraying them with boiled blood. Mu’atha was relieved after knowing that she could use everything in the goat! Funny enough, six months passed and Mu’atha hasn’t yet eaten the dried meat as she was still eating other parts including bones. But she wasn’t in a rush as there is a time and place for everything.

10) Zubaida Al-Sayrafi borrowed from a grocer 2 Dirhams and 4 grains of barley. After six months he paid back 2 dirhams and 3 grains. The grocer was annoyed: “You own 100,000 Dinar and I’m a broke grocer who hardly owns 100 Fils and live on left goods! Besides, a cameleer and a porter came to your door and your aid wasn’t there to pay them, so I paid instead. And now you pay me a grain less!” Zubaida answered: “You fool! You lent me in summer and I paid you back in winter. 3 grains of moist winter barley are heavier than 4 dry summer ones!”

11) A miser invited a group of friends to his house. Before their arrival he agreed with his cook to perform an act: the cook would put the meat in the oven the minute they sit to eat. The host would then ask him to bring it out. Being raw, his friends won’t eat it (and the miser would be blameless). The cook would then take the meat, cook it, and bring it cold the next day to the same group of people who will think it’s today’s fresh meat. However, the cook forgot the deal, brought the meat cooked from the first time and the guests finished it. He received 80 lashes from the miser.

(To be continued....)


Rasha al Raisi is a certified skills trainer and the author of: The World According to Bahja.

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