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better than ours." He questioned me and I questioned him, and then he put fetters on my feet and locked

me up.

Then I sent to the Christians saying I had entered their religion, and I requested that whenever a

caravan came from Syria, they should tell me before its return in order for me to travel with them, and so

they did.

I broke loose from the iron fetters and went away. I set out with them for Syria. While I was there, I

asked about their learned man, and I was told that he was the bishop, leader of the church. I went to him

and told him my story. I lived with him, serving, praying, and learning.

But this bishop was not faithful in his religion, because he used to gather money from the people to

distribute it, but he would keep it for himself. Then he died.

They appointed a new leader in his place. I have never seen a man more godly than he in his

religion, nor more active in his bid for the Hereafter, nor more pious in the world, nor more punctual at

worship. I loved him more than I had ever loved any other person before.

When his fate came, I asked him, "To whom would you recommend me? And to whom would you

leave me?" He said, "O my son, I do not know anyone who is on the path I am and who leads the kind of

life I lead, except a certain man in Mosul."

When he died, I went to that man in Mosul, and told him the story, and I stayed with him as long as

Allah wished me to stay. Then death approached him. So I asked him, "To whom would you advise me

to go to?" He directed me to a pious man in Nisiibiin." So I went to him and told him my story. I stayed

with him as long as Allah wished me to stay. When death overtook him, I asked him as before. He told

me to meet a person at `Amuriah in Byzantium. So, to Byzantium I went and stayed with that man,

earning my living there by rearing cattle and sheep.

Then death approached him, and I asked him, "To whom should I go?" He said, "O my son, I know

no one anywhere who is on the path we have been on so that I can tell you to go to him. But you have

been overtaken by an epoch in which there will appear a prophet in the pure creed of lbraahiim

(Abraham). He will migrate to the place of palm trees. If you can be sincere to him, then do so. He has

signs which will be manifested: he does not eat of charity, yet he accepts gifts, and between his shoulders

is the seal of prophethood. When you see him, you will know him."

A caravan passed by me on that day. I asked them where they had come from and learned that they

were from the Arabian Peninsula. So I told them, "I give you these cattle and sheep of mine in return for

your taking me to your land." They agreed. So they took me in their company until they brought me to

Wadi Al-Quraa and there they wronged to me. They sold me to a Jew. I saw many palm trees and

cherished the hope that it was the land that had been described to me and which would be the future

place of the advent of the prophet, but it was not.

I stayed with this Jew who bought me until another from Bani Quraidhah came to him one day and

bought me from him. I stayed with him until we came to Al -Madiinah. By Allah, I had hardly seen it

when I knew that it was the land described to me.

I stayed with the Jew, working for him on his plantation in Bani Quraidhah until Allah sent His

Prophet, who later emigrated to Al-Madiinah and dismounted at Qubaa' among the Bani `Amr lbn `Awf.

Indeed, one day, I was at the top of a palm tree with my master sitting below it when a Jewish man came.

He was a cousin of his and said to him, "May Allah destroy Bani Qubaa'. They are spreading a rumor

about a man at Qubaa' who came from Makkah claiming that he is a prophet." By Allah, he had hardly

said it, when I was seized by a tremor, and the palm tree shook until I almost fell on my master.