The Magic of White Garments
It was the practice of Ibrahim Khawas (mercy be upon him) that whenever he set out on a jorney to some place he neither informed anybody nor did anyone have any knowledge of it. All he took with him was a watercistern which he would use for whudu.
Hamid Aswad (mercy be upon him) said,”Once I was in his company, sitting in the mosque when he took his water cistern and set out. I followed him. When we reached Qadsiya he asked me. ”Hamid ! where do you intened to go?” I replied, ”I intened to visit the sacred city of Mecca.” And further added, ”I shall, if Allah so Wills.”
After three days journeying, another young man joined us. He travelled a day and night but did not observe a single prayer. I informed Ibrahim of this. Ibrahim later aked the young man, ”Why have you not observed the prayers?” He replied, ”The prayer is not obligatory on me.” He asked, ” why? Are you not a Muslim?” He answered, ”I am a Christian and in Christianity, I spend the time reposing my trust in God. My inner self had whispered that I had become perfect in the matter of trust. ”I refuted his claim and brought him to the wilderness, with the intention of testing his claim. Ibrahim however said nothing but walked on and advised me not to interfear and allow him to travel with us.
He travelled on with us until we reached Battan Mard. There, Ibrahim asked the Christian, ”What is your name?” He replied, ”My name is Abdul Masih! This is now the boundary of Mecca. The Almighty has prohibited the entry for those who scribe partners to Him”. Furthermore he recited to him a verse from the Qur’an; the translation of which means: “Those, who ascribe partners to Allah, are unclean. They should not even come near the Sacred Mosque.” The outcome of the test you wanted to give to your inner self is already apparent to you. So you should not enter Mecca. If we happen to see you there we will object to your presence.
Hamid says, “We left him there and moved forward. We reached the sacred city of Mecca. As we passed by Arafat, we saw Abdul Masih there; donned in the lhram. He came to us and fell down at the feet of Ibrahim. Ibrahim asked him, “O Abdul Masih! What happened to you?” He asked Ibrahim not to call him by this name, as he was not the servant of the Masih but a slave of that Being whose slave was also the Masih (Peace be upon him).
Ibrahim then asked him what had brought this change on. He related, “, I sat down at the place where you left me. When another caravan of Muslims passed by, I could not help myself noticing the simple white garments in which they were dressed. Overcome by this, I decided to wear one too and Joined them in their company. On reaching the sacred city of Mecca I saw the House of Allah. At once my previous beliefs had paled into insignificance. I washed myself, became a Muslim and adopted the Ihram. I have been looking for you since the morning.” Thereafter, he remained together with us untill he breathed his last.