Posted by: Dawud Israel | September 14, 2008

How to Perform a Miracle


Bilal and Dawud are doing some Feed the Streets–handing out bagged lunches to homeless people in downtown Toronto. After they are done, they head to Popeyes chicken to get some lunch for themselves.

Bilal: Hey man, I’m dead out of cash.
Dawud: Relax, here’s 5 dollars for food.

Dawud get his chicken and Bilal gets some rice.
As they leave the Popeyes, Bilal gives the rice to a homeless man sitting outside of Popeyes. Dawud hadn’t noticed this person and was really struck that the mindset of taking care of the less fortunate was not oriented around an ‘event’ like it was to Dawud, but a practical ideal for all times.

A few days later…

Bilal: Hey man, here is that money I borrowed from you last week?
Dawud: Oh. Bro. Don’t even worry about it. Just keep it. No worries.
Bilal: Nah man, I insist.
Dawud: Listen, come on we’re bros. There’s no money between brothers.
Bilal: Just take it dude!
Dawud: Alright, how about this. You keep the money and give it in sadaqah (charity). How’s that sound?
Bilal: OK, that sounds cool.

My question to you is since we exchanged hands of the money and the variation of our actions…Who gets all the hasanat? To whom belongs the reward of this good deed? We both would get the reward whereas, if we hadn’t set out with the intention to feed the poor…we wouldn’t have found more good deeds.

This is a true story. And it really impacted me quite a bit when it happened. Here I was thinking that Feed the Streets was the most I could do to help these homeless people…but then I saw something else. That is what you call a real eman rush–really feel the horizon broaden and see that their is something higher. Just seeing this brother giving that bowl of rice was totally surreal–what you imagine a miracle to be like. See that is the thing, even when you bear witness that their is something higher, (namely Allah)…you forget that, you can see glimpses of ‘something higher’, something more radiant and beautiful when you see good deeds performed, because you wouldn’t expect it. And that is the true bearing witness of God, that yes, there is evidence that there is something Greater than us Whose Hand we see in the actions of the righteous. Good deeds are the proof of Allah’s existence.

Now, the other moral of this story is that when you perform a good action, you ‘allow’ others to do so as well. In mundane terms we call this setting an example–but when it happens its much more profound. It is miraculous. If I were to see someone walk on water, it would not have as much effect on me as this event. And in the words of the awliya, “the truest miracles occur only in the heart.”

This was one of the spiritual experiences I had that summer in Toronto, I don’t know Bilal personally and he doesn’t recognize me anymore…and that just underlines that Allah wanted me to take from this experience a lesson, not a person or a new friend–but a wisdom.

I asked the question: to whom belongs this good deed?
The answer is: to Allah it belongs and to Him is it’s return.

Subhana kallahumma wa bihamdika ash-haduana la illaha illa ant astaghfiruka wa atubu ilayk, Ameen.


  1. It’s sounds like your on high up on Cloud9 eman rush, bro – Alhamdulillah!!!!

    Keep it up with these small stories – your insight is truly valuable, most people wouldn’t see what you see in these simple but powerful situations.

    Assalamuaalykum Wah Rahmatullahi Wah Barakatuh!!!!!


  2. […] came to me today which seems to be the moral of the previous discussion on this topic. And that is, if you read the Sunnah or the stories of our pious ancestors, you will […]

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