Jannah for one Dirham!
Lived from: 202 AH to 275 AH
Imam Abu Dawood رحمه الله, whose full name was Sulayman ibn al-Ash’ath as-Sijistani is a renowned Muhaddith and the compiler of the famous collection of Hadeeth known as Sunan Abu Dawood in which he carefully selected 4,800 Ahadeeth from his personal collection of 500,000 Ahadeeth!
Along with his great knowledge in Hadeeth, he had an incredible desire to please Allah Ta’ala and do good deeds as can be learnt from the following incident.
Imam Abu Dawood رحمه الله, was once on board a ship when he heard a person on the shore sneeze and say ‘الحمد لله’ (All praise belongs to Allah). Imam Abu Dawood رحمه الله wanted to reply to this person’s sneeze but the ship had already set sail and so he was too far to respond.
For this, he hired a small boat (which was available on the ship) for one Dirham and went ashore in order to reply to the person who sneezed with ‘يرحمك الله’ (may Allah have mercy upon you).
When he returned to the ship, his travel companions asked why he had done such an act which was not necessary and he would not have been held accountable for.
Imam Abu Dawood رحمه الله answered, “It is possible that the person who sneezed was a Mustajabud-Daʿwat (one whose dua’s are readily accepted by Allah Ta’ala). [So I thought if I say يرحمك الله, he will respond with يهديكم الله (may Allah guide you) and these words would be accepted in my favour!]
When the people on board the ship slept later that night, they heard a voice proclaiming, “O people of the ship, (Imam) Abu Dawood (رحمه الله) purchased Jannah from Allah Ta’ala at the cost of one Dirham!”