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The Shaykh (rah) replied: “My beloved friends! For how long can I keep my condition hidden from you? My heart has become filled with love for the girl we saw the day before yesterday. So much has this love filled me that it is in control of all my limbs. It is not possible for me under any circumstance to leave from here.” Hadrat Shibli (rah) replied: “Our leader! You are the spiritual guide of all Iraq. You are known for your piety, knowledge and virtues. Your disciples number over 12,000. I beg you through the Holy Quran not to disgrace us.” The Shaykh (rah) replied: “My beloved friends, your lot and my lot has already been sealed by fate. The cloak of sainthood has been removed from me and the signs of guidance have been taken away from me. What has been predestined has come to pass, now I am nothing.” Saying this the Shaykh (rah) started weeping bitterly.
When the people heard of our return, they turned up in large numbers at the outskirts of the city to come and meet the Shaykh (rah) . They saw that he was not with us and asked about it. We told them the entire story. They was a lot of sorrow and crying. Many fell down in prayer begging Allah to guide the Shaykh (rah) to the right path and return him to his former position. In the meantime all the khanqahs were closed down. We were still talking about the Shaykh’s (rah) tragedy one year later when we decided to visit that town again and find out how he was. A group of us set forth and after enquiring were told that he was in the woods looking after pigs. We said: “Allah protect us! What has happened? The villagers told us that he had proposed marriage to the daughter of the village chief. The girls father had accepted the proposal on the condition that he would look after the pigs.”
“With tears streaming down our eyes, we went to the woods where he was rearing pigs. We saw him with a string of sacred beads around his neck. He stood leaning on a staff as he watched the pigs, standing in the same way in which he stood when he used to deliver the Khutbah for us. This was like rubbing salt into our open wounds.”
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