Shaykh Ahmad Sayih wrote,
In the name of Allah the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate
On a day of Friday, after Maghrib, while [Shaykh Salih al-Ja’fari] was walking back from the Old Qibla (of the Azhar Mosque, where he led the prayer), his student Hajj Muhammad Ali Yasin came to him. He greeted him and kissed his hand and then said to him,
‘Oh mawlana, I have seen in my dream this past night sayyidi Ahmad ibn Idris (may Allah be pleased with him). He said to me, “What are the attributes of Allah (most high)?”‘ Or maybe he said that he said, ‘How many are the attributes of Allah (most high)?’
– The Shaykh gave a strong interest and said to him, ‘What did you reply to him?’
– He said, ‘I did not know…’
The Shaykh quickly entered the Maghribi Hall and sat on his chair, and said to me, ‘Oh Shaykh Ahmad, bring the notebook.’
This was the way of the Shaykh, he used to call everyone, even his students, ‘Oh shaykh so-and-so,’ or ‘O blessed one,’ and not just by their name.
I came with the notebook and pen. The Shaykh sat on his chair and I sat under it (on the floor). My master the Shaykh began to compose the poem (rhymed composition) Mufeedat al-‘Awaam (The Poem that Benefits the Laymen).
The one who seeks the mercy of his Sublime Lord
Salih al-Ja’fari, grandson of the Wali
al-Ja’fari who is in Paradise
who used to teach the Qur’an and religious knowledge,
Says: Praise be to Allah for (the science of) Tawhid
with which we are saved from the shackles of mere repetition…
Until he finished it completely, and sealed it with,
It was composed in a portion of a night
in the Noble Azhar, on the day of Friday
I asked my Lord for everyone who reads it
the happiness and bliss of the chosen ones
Likewise a good end for everyone
without dissipation and without loss
and then as soon as he finished the last line, which was –
Its verses are eight-five in number
from the bounty of my Lord its arrangement came to me
– the Muaddhin said, “Allahu akbar” for the Isha prayer.
The Shaykh never faltered in a single verse, as if he was simply reading from a book.
This story was narrated by Shaykh Ahmad Sayih Abdul Qadir al-Husayni, author of al-Adwaa fi Manaqib al-Zahraa, and al-Wafaa li-Walidayy al-Mustafa.
Translator’s Note: This is a rhymed composition, or poem, that summarizes the science of Tawhid. In it the Shaykh wrote,
This rhymed composition is small
but in the knowledge it contains it is big
It summarizes what every Muslim should know about the attributes of Allah (most high): What is necessary to be of His attributes, what is impossible to be of His attributes, and what is possible or permissible to attribute to Him. Likewise it contains what every Muslim should know about Allah’s prophets (may Allah bless them all and grant them peace): what is necessary to be of their attributes, what is impossible to be of their attributes, and what is possible or permissible to be of their attributes.
It concludes with a brief exhortation to constant remembrance of Allah, especially with the Word of Tawhid, ‘La ilaha illa Allah Muhammadun Rasul Allah,’ and speaks about the centrality of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) in the religion.