The reason that at the door of Imam al-Husayn’s maqam there are two ring-shaped door handles (may God be pleased with him) is that he used to have an iron ring on his house door that visitors would knock to be let in; it was a large door. A poor bedouin came to him once from the mountains and held onto the ring and recites these lines:
He is not disappointed in his hopes in you
who moves the ring on your front door
You are generous, you are reliable
your father was a king, the killer of deviants
Were it not for your predecessors
hell would be surrounding us from every angle.
He (may God be pleased with him) was a man of a lot of extra devotions. When he finished what he was doing, he opened the door and sat the man beside him, then he called his servant and said: O servant! Get me the pouch from the chest – and in it was his allowance from the Treasury House- and the servant brought it. The bedouin thought that imam al-Husayn (may God be pleased with him) would open it and give him a few dinars, but when he pushed the entire purse to him, the bedouin said:
By God, I bear witness that you are the son of the Prophet (may God bless him and his family). By God, no one can do such an act, or give such a giving, but a man from the family (Ahlul Bayt) of the Prophet (may God send peace and blessings upon him and his family).
Shaykh al-Shinqiti the great hadith master and mufti of Mecca (who had moved to Egypt) said:
I read those lines when I was teaching my children commentaries on Ibn Hisham in grammar and I remembered that our master al-Husayn is present and alive, and how he gave that bedouin what he gave in his lifetime, and he is now alive in his maqam. So I entered his maqam with one of my students and grabbed the ring and recited these same lines. Then I said:
“My master! I am not permitted to travel, but I want to travel to Mecca.” A man who was wearing a long coat and fez, and was holding a sibha, said to me: “O Shaykh, not at this time!”
I said to him: “What is not at this time?”
He said: “Travel.”
I said: “When?”
He said: “In a month’s time.”
A month later, the man came to me in the same place and said: “Place your trust in Allah, it is time to travel!”
Then I went to the British ruler of Egypt and said: “I am travelling to Mecca and I heard that the way is through you.”
He said: “Go bring us your passport.”
So I said to myself: “God has made it possible!” Shaykh Muhammad Bakhit al-Muti’i the Mufti of Egypt was my friend. I said to him: “I will travel to Mecca by the permission of God.”
He said to me: “You must tell me the secret by which you were allowed to travel. You people of the maghreb (the Muslim west- the shaykh was from Mauritania) have your secrets!”
I said to him: “By God, I am not travelling except by the blessing of our master al-Husayn (may God be pleased with him)” and I told him the story as it happened.
This is the speech of a great shaykh, a hadith master, but now we see people say: visiting (the graves of the righteous) is forbidden! I attended his lessons for fifteen years, he taught me.
– Shaykh Salih al-Ja’fari, The Friday Lessons.