Be like a Bee

Twas said to us ‘be like a bee,
Who lightly treads and goes with ease,
Who purely gives and so receives.’
In peace he comes, and gently leaves

In one of his lessons Sayyidi al-Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah preserve him)[1] called us to reflect upon the following beautiful hadith, narrated by Imam Ahmad on the authority of `Abdullah bin `Amr:

قال صلى الله عليه و آله و صحبه و سلم : و الذي نفس محمد بيده إن مثل المؤمن كمثل النحلة أكلت طيبا و وضعت طيبا و وقعت فلم تكسر و لم تفسد

 The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) said:

“By the One in whose hand is the soul of Muhammad the believer is like a bee which eats that which is pure and wholesome and lays that which is pure and wholesome.  When it lands on something it does not break or ruin it.”

  • The bee only eats from flowers which are tayyib (pure and wholesome). It is not attracted to repulsive things, unlike some other insects. Likewise the believer only eats that which is pure and wholesome.
  • The bee lays or excretes honey which is also tayyib. Likewise only that which is good and wholesome comes forth from the believer, whether it be his words, his intentions or his actions.
  • The bee is light and nimble and does not break the flowers upon which it lands, nor does it ruin them. Likewise the believer is gentle in his dealings with the creation and does not harm or ruin any human or animal or plant.
Sheikh Yahya Rhodus does a beautiful explanation and analysis of this hadith:
Shaykh Yahya

(taken from:

[1] Fajr lesson, Dar al-Mustafa, 9th Shawwal 1432, translated by Ustadh Amin Buxton (Allah preserve him and his teachers, and allow us to benefit from them).

One thought on “Be like a Bee

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