The Story Behind The Poem on Tawheed

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.


  1. Omar Mirza says:

    I love the way the Shaykh takes a hint from his Shaykh and responds to it as a command with no hesitation, racing to obedience — may Allah be pleased with them both!

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