Sheikh Salih Abadi
by Sheikh Serag Johaar
Assalamu’alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakaatuh.
Al-Hamdulillah, it is so good to see so many of us are gathered here today to celebrate Quran and to commemorate the people of the Quran.
Our ustaath, the beloved Al Marhum Shaykh Salih Abadi, is probably the first person that comes to our mind when we speak of people of the Quran in our community. It is an honour which our Shaykh truly deserves because, Shaykh Salih Abadi not only read the Quran day and night, he also taught the Quran to so many, from professionals to the ordinary layman, but most importantly, he lived by the Quran like no other.He genuinely embodied Hifth-ul-Quran and was certainly a Hafith in the truest sense of the word.
My closeness to the Shaykh was not only as a student, but also the fact that my parents cared and slept in Shaykh’s home when Shaykh’s wife Amatie (to the students known as Ummi) passed on. For many years my dearest beloved mother (known as Naa) cooked meals for Shaykh. Alhamdu Lillaah, she is still amongst us at the ripe old age of 91. The indelible mark left by our Esteemed Shaykh Salih Abadi in our mother’s life is that she still recites the Glorious Quran daily.
So, my reflection of Shaykh is not only as my respected teacher, but also as a loving family associate, and one whose company I often shared with so many fond memories. Just to relate to you the kind of person he was:
1) كان خلقه القران Wherever our Beloved Shaykh entered a gathering, his humble Quranic aura compelled one to stand up out of respect.
2) اسوة حسنة His dress code and punctuality was that of a true role model.
3) اداب Shaykh Saleh was revered by my two other Ustaaths viz, Al-Marhum Shaykh Ahmad Behardien and Shaykh Muammad Alawi Maliki and the mutual respect between them was evident whenever they met.
4) وسطية Simplicity and moderation were outstanding attributes of the well-balanced lifestyle of our honourable Shaykh.
5) تكفل الله على رزقك Allah is Sufficient for your Providence and Sustenance. These words from my Unselfish Ustaath Shaykh Saleh still resonate with me until today. اتبعوا من لا يسألكم اجرا وهم مهتدون Surah Yaaseen 36 Ayah 21
“Obey and follow those who ask no wages or remuneration of you for themselves,and who are rightly guided”
6) عبادىThe total humility, sincerity and endurance whilst in Ebadah are the noble characteristics exemplified by our committed Shaykh. On this I wish to relate one spiritual incident of religious endurance that stays in my memory.
It was 9 June 1992 (9 Thul Hijjah 1414) Youmi Arafah . We found ourselves on Mina at the time of Wuqoof. It was a total gridlock of all vehicles and no movement of any transportation whatsoever. All the female Hujjaaj of the group were on Arafah and we, all the males were on Mina.” Al Hajju Arafah” meaning we have to be on Arafah from Zawaal till at least Fajr the next morning to perform Wuqoof. My dearest father, our beloved Shaykh Saleh ,Haj Qausim Abdullah and all the male Hujjaj were compelled to walk from Mina to Arafah. The distance is about 17 kilometers and the temperature is 40 degrees plus. Our Ustaath is 82 years old at that time and he walked with us in the sweltering heat. We left Mina at Thuhr and reached Muzdalifah about Asr. We arrived at Arafah by Maghrib. Extreme Ebadah under tough circumstances, my two fathers completed their rituals with excellence and perfection Alhamdulilah.
These are fond memories we cherish to this day of a great man. Shaykh touched so many of our lives in such a special way. That is why I say; there are those who come into our lives and have an immeasurable impact that changes our lives forever. For many of us, Shaykh Salih Abadi was that person, and most importantly, he impacted our lives through the Holy Qur’an.
May Allah grant our Shaykh Jannatul Firdaus, in-sha-Allah.
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