The Effect of the Tongue


Busr ibn Arta’ah and the Hamdan Tribe

When Mu`¡wiyah sent Busr ibn Arta`ah to the Hamdan Tribe to rule, Busr ibn Arta`ah exercised so much oppression and committed so many crimes that no one dared to object. At this time, a brave lady called Sawdah went to Sham (Syria) to defend the sacred religion and the people. When Mu`¡wiyah was informed of her arrival he was surprised. He said that he had been trying to arrest her with no result. Now she had gone there on her own. He admitted her to the court. When she entered, she bitterly greeted Mu`¡wiyah.

 

Mu`¡wiyah said: “See! You had to come and greet me.” She replied: “Do not be proud of your rule. There is a term for everything. It will soon end. Do not be so attached to your position since it will not last.” Mu`¡wiyah said: “O’ Sawdah! Do you remember the days of war when you sang heroic poetry among the soldiers of Ali? What was your goal then? Was it not my destruction? Sing them now.” Sawdah said: “Your oppression has made me forget everything. Now I have come to complain against the oppression of Busr ibn Arta`ah. He has oppressed us. He has confiscated the people’s property, and has murdered the men.” Mu`¡wiyah said: “Now I will send you to him to treat you as he pleases.”

 

Then Sawdah said: “May God bless the pure body that is buried, with whom justice was buried too.” Mu`¡wiyah said: “Whom are you referring to?” She replied: “I am referring to my Master, Imam Ali (MGB). You should know that I had a similar complaint that I expressed to Imam Ali (MGB) before. He was alone, and wanted to start his prayer. When he noticed me, he asked the reason. When I told him that I had come to complain against his governor, he touched his beard and his eyes overflowed with tears and he said: “O’ God! Be a witness that I did not send my governor to oppress your servants.” He then wrote the order to fire the governor and handed it to me. Now you threaten me instead of considering my complaint. This is the difference between Imam Ali (MGB) and you.”

 

Mu`¡wiyah got upset and wrote a letter to Busr ibn Arta`ah to stop his crimes and acts of oppression. Thus, we can see that the tongue can be used as an effective tool. It is so effective that it can even be used to change the views of a cruel man such as Mu`¡wiyah. Then Mu`¡wiyah said: “It was Imam Ali ibn Abi Talib who made you too proud by saying: If I were the gatekeeper of Heaven I will tell the Bani Hamdan tribe to safely enter Heaven.[1]


[1] A’alam an-Nisaa,v.2, p.270; Zanan-i-Ghahreman, v.1, p.169.

 

5 Responses to “The Effect of the Tongue”

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