بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
و الصلاة و السلام على أشرف المرسلين
و على اله و اصحابه أجمعين
Sayiduna Umar ibn al-Khattab (radiAllah ‘anhu) did not conquer the city of the Isra (Jerusalem) with a great army nor with a beautiful and strong mount. Quite the contrary, He crossed dangerous places and deserts wearing a Muraqqa’a and he was only accompanied by a servant and by his modest mount. They were reciting together Surah Ya-sin. Sometimes Umar (radiAllah ‘anhu) would ride the animal and sometimes it was the turn of his servant, sometimes they would let the donkey have a rest. With this expedition, Al-Farooq (radiAllah ‘anhu) gave a lesson for those who reflect.
On his arrival in the camp of the muslim army, Sayiduna Umar (radiAllah ‘anhu) was welcomed by Abu ‘Ubayda and other Sahaba as the Commander of the Faithful should be. Then Abu ‘Ubayda leaned to kiss the hand of ‘Umar; in his turn ‘Umar bent down to kiss the feet of his companion. This is how the companions have been brought up in the school of the Beloved ﷺ, you who reject kissing the hand of your companion.
The Sahaba encouraged ‘Umar (radiAllah ‘anhu) to ride an other mount and to wear appropriate clothing for the greatness of the day and they did not stop to insist until he accepted. He received a great horse and when he rode it, he felt pride and vanity in himself and he immediately dismounted from the horse saying: “Until this day, I did not know that the demons could ride a horse! I must take back my muraqqa’a and my mount”.
Then he headed for the holy city, and while he was walking, he set foot in the mud of a stream near Jerusalem. He took off his sandals and took them with his hand while the other hand was holding the bridle of his mount. Then Abu ‘Ubayda (radiAllah ‘anhu) told him: “O Commander of the Faithful, you set foot in the mud and your wear this Muraqqa’a while those people are princes and kings who pay attention to looks?”
Umar’ hit him on his chest and said: “If someone else than you had said this, O ‘Abu ‘Ubayda, I would have hit his head with this whip.Verily, we were a disgraceful people and Allah honored us with Islam, so if we seek honor from other than Islam, then Allah will humiliate us.”
May Allah be pleased with ‘Umar, the farooq of Islam! Indeed, there is no honor and no spiritual elevation by wearing fabrics which are going to disappear, and the admonition can only be found in a heart in peace and which is totally extinguished in the Divine Presence.
It is in this way that ‘Umar (radiAllah ‘anhu) walked, covered by mud, holding in his hand the bridle of his mount which was riding by his servant.
When the Clerics of Jerusalem saw him coming in this way, they said: “By Allah, here is your companion”.
After four months of siege, they gave him the keys to the city without resistance.
Their learder introduced himself, holding in his hand the keys to Jerusalem and after he gave them, he said:
“According to our book (the exegesis of the gospel), He who will receive the keys to The Iliya’ (Jerusalem) must have three characteristics:
firstly : he will come walking while his servant will be riding his mount.
secondly: he will come the foot covered by mud
thirdly: let me count the number of pieces of fabrics which are sewed to your clothing.”
He counted seventeen pieces (in other versions fourteen or twelve). He said: “and it was the third characteristic. Then He gave to the Commander of the Faithful the keys to Jerusalem.”
“The question is not to wear beautiful clothing and to say: I am. Wear whatever you want but never forget that the clerics of Jerusalem gave the keys to the city to a noble and proud man who was wearing a muraqqa’a”.