The Prophet's (s) Recommendation to Ibn `Umar, Allah Be Pleased With Both of Them
Al-Tirmidhi narrated from Ibn `Umar - Allah be well-pleased with both of them! - that he said: "Allah's Messenger held my shoulders1 and said: 'Be in the world as if you were either a stranger or a traveller, and count yourself as one of those who lie in their graves.'"2
Al-Nasa'i's and Ahmad's narrations have the following addition at the beginning of the hadith: "Worship Allah as if you see Him."
This recommendation contains the exposition of the stages of spiritual travel and wayfaring toward the station of the Supreme Sovereign King. These three stages include all the abodes of travelers and the stations of those who have arrived. We have made an extensive and valuable study of this narration, which we shall cite further down, if Allah wills.
1 Al-Tirmidhi's wording has "held part of my body," but the shaykh used the wording of al-Bukhari. The latter narrated the hadith without the clause "and count yourself as one of those who lie in their graves."
2 Narrated by al-Bukhari as mentioned, al-Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, Ahmad
Allah's blessings and peace on the Prophet., his Family, and his Companions
Dr. G.F. Haddad
© As-Sunnah Foundation of America, 2003