Dead Father’s Debts

‘Mother, dear Mother!’ The woeful cry of a young man was heard in the silence of the dark night.
A caravan was travelling from Medina to an outpost. The Holy Prophet (s), who always followed the caravan to keep an eye on the weak and feeble members on the journey, in case left behind, heard the voice. Reaching the spot, he (s) found this very anxious young man, standing atop his camel’s back, wailing aloud for help.
The Holy Prophet (s) asked him, ‘What is your name?’
‘Jaber ibn e Abdullah’, he replied.
‘Why are you so afraid and anxious?’
‘O Messenger of Allah! My camel is old and weak. It is exhausted and refuses to get up. I am afraid of being left behind, while the caravan is moving with such speed.’
‘Do you have a rod?’
‘Yes, here it is.’
The Holy Prophet (s) used the rod to help the camel stand. He (s) then made it sit down again. He (s) then told Jaber to seat himself on its back. Holding the bridle in his hand he (s) made the camel rise. After that the camel moved slowly but steadily. On the way, The Holy Prophet (s) conversed affectionately with him, begging forgiveness from Allah, for him, 35 times, Jaber counted.
‘How many brothers and sisters do you have?’
‘I have seven sisters and am the only son.’
‘Have you paid off your father’s debts?’
‘Not all. Some is still due.’
‘Talk to the debtors on your return to Medina, and come to me during the date-picking season.’
‘I will.’
‘Are you married?’
‘Yes.’
‘Who did you marry?’
‘I married a widow of Medina.’
‘A young virgin would have been more suitable for one as young as you.’
‘I have young, naive sisters. I thought a sensible, experienced woman would be more beneficial to the family than another naïve young girl.’
‘That was a very wise decision. How much did you pay for this camel?’
‘Five gold coins.’
‘I have the exact amount. Come and take its price from me in Medina.’
The journey ended and everyone got busy in the day’s work. After some days they returned to Medina. Jaber brought his camel to hand it over to the Holy Prophet (s).
On seeing him The Holy Prophet (s) called out to Bilal and said, ‘Give him 5 gold coins for the camel and 3 gold coins to pay his father Abdullah’s debts. Return the camel to him for his use.’
Turning to Jaber, he (s) asked, ‘Have you spoken to your father’s debtors?’
‘Not yet.’
‘Are the things left behind by your father not sufficient to pay off his debts?’
‘No, I’m afraid not.’
‘Remind me during the date-picking season.’
The season soon arrived. The Holy Prophet (s) went with Jaber, paid off his father’s debt, and gave him some extra money to fullfill his domestic responsibilities.