Abdullah bin Jada'an - A Second Chance
Arabian Knights - Volume 2

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Kaan Ya Makaan, Fee Qadeem Al-Zamaan…
There was a Place, in Times of Old…

Called Mecca where a young man named Abdullah bin Jada'an had worn out his welcome.

In a place where there were no real laws, Abdullah still managed to gain a reputation for criminal behavior. He always did whatever he liked, never caring who he hurt or what the consequences were. Before long, both his family and his clan had grown weary of smoothing over all the trouble he caused.

In a moment of perfect understanding, Abdullah's clan publicly disavowed any responsibility for his actions, and his family outright disowned him. The beleaguered people of Mecca took advantage of Abdullah's loss of protectors and triumphantly drove him out of town, relieved to finally be ridding themselves of his criminal presence.

Shorn of both home and family, Abdullah didn't know what to do or where to go. He had grown so used to doing as he pleased and having his family and clan deal with the consequences that he now felt completely lost. Alone and hopeless, he decided that the only thing he could do was to commit the ultimate crime: He would kill himself. His mind made up, Abdullah wandered into the ancient mountains that surrounded Mecca, bent on ending his life.

As he climbed higher and higher into the mountains, the sun sank lower and lower in the sky. Just as the as the mountain peaks started to obscure the fiery rays of the sun, Abdullah spied a giant snake lying coiled on the path before him. The serpent's eyes gleamed an evil red and its great fangs were exposed and shining wickedly despite the shade in which it lurked. At first Abdullah was filled with fear, then he decided that the snake was just what he was looking for. Hoping to startle the snake into biting him, Abdullah threw his arms up into the air and leapt forward with a wild cry.

The snake didn't react. It didn't seem at all impressed with Abdullah's wild leap or his threatening voice. It moved not at all as Abdullah leapt at it again and again, shouting insults and wordless cries. Finally, Abdullah stood mutely and stared down at the inexplicably still form of the snake. He approached it slowly and leaned forward to get a closer look.

Just as he stooped down close to the still form, the sinking sun sent a bright burst of light over the winding mountain paths. Bathed in sunshine, Abdullah stood transfixed as he realized that what he beheld was no living snake at all. It was a perfectly detailed statue made of pure gold with bright red rubies for eyes.

A quick look around revealed that the snake was lying near the mouth of a deep crevasse leading into the heart of the mountain. With a fearful shudder incongruous to someone who so recently tried to end his own life, Abdullah squeezed into the crevasse and slipped into the dark heart of the mountain.

Inside, Abdullah found a cave containing the tombs of the famous kings of the tribe of Jurhum surrounded by the treasures and possessions that each king had sought to take with him into the afterlife. Awed by the tomb and its priceless contents Abdullah spent quite some time examining one item after another until the deepening gloom alerted him to the imminent sunset. Abdullah haphazardly snatched up what gold he could then quickly exited the tomb.

Once he was outside again, Abdullah took several deep breaths while he looked around. The sun had set and the moon was softly illuminating the road to Mecca, tempting and calling Abdullah home. With the gold he had found, Abdullah thought, perhaps he could return to Mecca and make amends to those he had wronged. If his family and tribe would only give him a second chance, he would live a good and blameless life, and prove to them that he could mend his ways. Dreaming of the new life he was determined to build, Abdullah carefully made his way down out of the mountains.

Upon his return, the people of Mecca were surprised by Abdullah's sudden change in fortune, but it was Abdullah's sudden change of character that was the real surprise. The man who was once a criminal, in every sense of the word, had transformed into an honorable man who generously threw lavish banquets for all the people of Mecca. In later, leaner years, Abdullah's banquets were the only thing that stood between half of Mecca and starvation.

Though it took time - a lot of time - the people of Mecca, and more importantly Abdullah's family and clan, finally acknowledged the sincerity of Abdullah's repentance and his wish to do better. As time passed and there was no sign of the old Abdullah, it became easier for everyone to forget the wrongs of the past and give Abdullah the second chance he so desperately desired.

Humbly, Abdullah accepted his much coveted second chance and worked hard to be worthy of it. Decades later, when Abdullah passed away after a long and virtuous life, he had become one of Mecca's most upstanding and best loved citizens.

*Written by © 2012. Care to read or leave Comments?

Notes:
  1. Names, Translations and Aliases:
    • Abdullah bin Jada'an: عبدالله بن جدعان بن عمرو بن كعب بن سعد بن تيم بن مرة.

Sources:
  1. Al-Dimishqi, A. (2009 AD, 1430 H). البداية و النهاية [The Beginning and the End]. Beirut: Al-Maktaba Al-Assrya Publishing and Distributing. Volume I. Book 2. Page 114-115.

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