Recently I read a story in Sindhi language about Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai. Shah Abdul Latif is one of the most loved personalities, who was a poet, Sufi religious scholar and lived some three centuries ago.
He is equally loved and has devotees among Muslims and Hindus alike. Earlier, his poetry was cluttered up and one of his devotees, who was a Sindhi Hindu, decided to accumulate his poety in a book form and now it is available as “Shah Jo Risalo”.
Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai had followers all around the Sindh province and even outside of it. One of his followers came to get his blessings and requested him to visit his home. Shah Sahib accepted his invitation but said him no to wait because it was likely that his tour would not take place soon.
After couple of months Shah Sahib paid a surprise visit to his home. This struck him with both the happiness and worry. He was happy for the fact that his Spiritual Mentor has come to his house which was a matter of honor for him. He knew that there were many rich followers to whom Shah Sahib could visit but his Spiritual leader chose his house while knowing that he couldn’t offer a gracious hospitality.
Poor host was sad and worried for the fact that there was nothing in kitchen which he could serve to his Spiritual leader. He kept thinking what to sell out so that he could buy some chicken and fruits. But he was so poor that he couldn’t found anything worth some cash. He couldn’t understand what to do in such circumstances. He wanted to serve his spiritual leader with the best food in the world but he was just helpless.
While he was still thinking and his Spiritual leader was waiting in the guest room, her wife said, “ I have one idea to get all the food and fruits if you don’t mind.” He asked what the idea is and she returned:
“There is a guy who has always asked me to be her girlfriend. He has asked me several times that he can give me anything that I want if I give in and share his bed. He is very rich and handsome but I have never given her any response- because I love you and I can’t betray you. I know you would be feeling outrageous but I can’t see you that upset and worried.”
Poor devotee was stunned by such revelation by her wife but remained silent.
“I know it will hurt you but I must say that please take me to his home. I am sure he will give me enough money by which we will purchase all the food to serve to our Spiritual Leader.”, she said.
Though he was poor man but not a pimp anyway. How can anyone permit her wife to go to her lover and sell out her respect which in fact was his own respect and honor. But he thought that may be his Spiritual Leader never will visit him again. And he was such a devotee who kept his spiritual leader above everything else. He was in a position where he selling his soul for a good hospitality looked normal to him. His love was his spiritual leader was overwhelming and he wanted to show this in his hospitality.
To his wife’s surprise he said, “Alright, we are going to that gentleman but I will not go with you in his home. I will remain outside the street. Just a minute let me inform my spiritual mentor that I will be back in five minutes”
He and her wife left in hurry and headed towards the home where his wife’s lover used to live. In ten minutes she was standing at his lovers door, knocking. Poor man hid himself behind the corner of the street so that her wife’s lover couldn’t see him.
When the lover of poor devotee’s wife opened the door he couldn’t believe what he was seeing. He instantly asked her to come in. Her lover said, “What a pleasant surprise. I can’t believe that you who have ever rejected me have come to my house. How can I serve you?”
“I have come with my husband who is standing behind the corner of your street with a shame. We have a guest tonight who is my husband’s spiritual leader to whom he loves so much- more than me – more than his own life. Unfortunately, we haven’t anything at home to cook so I asked him to let me see you so that you can give me some money. Do anything you like but please give me money.” She was crying and stammering.
By hearing all this his lover turned pale. He was really impressed with the devotion of his husband and felt honor of the spiritual leader.
He said “please forgive me for I have always thought to drag you down in my bed. I was greedy, lusty. And I was waiting for this moment that you come to me and beg me for some money to give me your love- your body. Now that I have seen you are coming at my house and your husband standing outside. I declare you as my sister. You are beautiful but poor but you have wealth of faith. Sit here I am coming in five minutes.”
After five minutes his lover turned brother gave her enough cash to serve whole the town and also gave her lot of clothes for herself and his husband. And came out with her out of house and hugged his poor husband.
“ Brother, forgive me. You have won me all over by your heart that is so big and filled with love and respect of your leader.”
They both cried while both were in each other’s hug. And then that rich man asked him,
“ Take me to your spiritual leader – I also want to have allegiance on his hand. He must be someone who he God Chosen.”