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AT-TUFAIL IBN `AMR AD-DAWSIY
The Rightly Guided Nature
In the land of Daws, he grew up in a noble, respected family. He was gifted with poetry, and his
fame and excellence spread among the tribes. During the season of `Ukaadh, when Arab poets came
from all directions and the people gathered and assembled to show off their poetry, At-Tufail used to
take his place in the forefront.
He used to frequent Makkah at times other than Ukaadh. Once he visited Makkah when the
Messenger had just started declaring his mission and the Quraish feared that At-Tufail would meet him
and convert to Islam and then put his poetic gift at the service of Islam. That would be a curse upon the
Quraish and their idols. On account of this, they circled around him and prepared for him a hospitality
that included every kind of joy, comfort, and ease. Then they went on to warn him about meeting the
Messenger of Allah. They said to him, "He has charming speech like magic and he makes division
between a man and his son, and a man and his brother, and a man and his wife. I fear for you and your
people from him. So do not talk to him nor listen to any talk from him."
Let us listen to At-Tufail himself telling the remainder of the story: So by Allah, they were still
insisting on my not listening to anything from him and not meeting him. And when I went over to the
Ka'bah, I filled my ears with cotton so as not to hear anything he had to say when he spoke. There I
found him standing praying at the
Ka' bah, so I stood close to him. Allah refused nothing but He made me hear some portion of what he
was reading. I heard a fine speech, and I said to myself, "Oh, may I lose my mother! Indeed I am an
intelligent poet. I would not fail to recognize the good from the ugly. What is it that hinders me from
listening to the man and what he says? If that which he brings is good, I should accept it, and if it is
I stayed until Muhammad departed to his house. I followed him until he entered his house, so I
entered behind him and said to him, "O Muhammad, verily your people have told me such-and-such
about you. By Allah, they kept making me afraid of you until I blocked my ears with cotton in order not
to hear your words. But Allah willed that I hear, so I heard a fine speech. Set forth to me your message."
So the Messenger presented to me Islam and recited to me from the Qur'aan. By Allah, I had never
heard a speech better than it, nor a matter more just than it. So, I surrendered and bore witness to the
I said, "O Messenger of Allah, indeed I am a person of credibility among my people and I am
returning to them to invite them to Islam, so call on Allah to make a sign for me that will be a help for
me in that which I call them to." He said, "O Allah, make for him a sign."
Allah has spoken appreciatively in His book " Those who listen to the speech and follow the best
part of it " (39:18).
We have met one of those great people and he is, indeed, a true picture of the image of the rightly
So, no sooner had he heard it than he accepted the message of some of the blessed guiding verses
which Allah had revealed to the heart of His Messenger until all his hearing was opened and all his heart,
until he stretched out his right hand to swear the oath of allegiance. Not only that, but he immediately
took upon himself the responsibility of inviting his people and kin to this religion of truth and the straight